Some principles for youth learning

Choy, Sarojni C. & Delahaye, Brian L. (2005) Some principles for youth learning. In 8th Annual Conference of the Australian VET Research Association, 13-15 April, Brisbane, QLD.


This paper proposes some principles for youth learning developed from a major research project. Specific parts of the project have been published in other literature, and this paper summarises key findings before proposing a set of principles to support their learning.

The findings of the research about youth learners and how they learn were analysed in the context of adult learning principles proposed by Knowles (1990). The analysis exposed discrepancy between youth and adult learners, implying that adult learning principles is unsuitable for most youth learners. A profile of youth learners was drawn from the research data on priorities that youth have, their motivation, and learning attributes. The analysis leads to three broad conclusions about youth learners:

  1. Most youth use a surface approach to learning largely due to time constraints, overwhelming volume of content, and assessment requirements that reward outcomes achieved through a surface approach.

  2. Most youth are at Stage 2 of their learning orientation on an orthogonal scale. Their learning could be facilitated through a directive, but supportive approach where the facilitator plays the role of a motivator and guide.

  3. Most youth seem to appreciate a relational level of understanding rather than abstract thinking. Youths’ learning could be better facilitated using Kolb’s learning theory using the information processing model. Their learning is best facilitated through an approach that begins with concrete experience and is followed by reflective observation and then abstract conceptualisation.

The research findings were used to develop a set of principles for youth learners in terms of education delivery practices, and skilling for higher learning. These principles would enhance facilitation of youths’ learning.

Impact and interest:

Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

996 since deposited on 04 Apr 2007
192 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 6863
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Additional URLs:
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > SPECIALIST STUDIES IN EDUCATION (130300) > Specialist Studies in Education not elsewhere classified (130399)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2005 (The authors)
Deposited On: 04 Apr 2007 00:00
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:12

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page