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Adult Learner > Strategies > Clear Structure & Presentation

Clear Structure & Presentation


When designing instruction for adults, expectations and goals should be clearly outlined to help learners focus on the material and make plans for success. It is important that new information is also presented clearly and coherently to avoid confusion and frustration. Presentations can be made in person, with or without visual aids, or online through live feeds or premade files. Regardless of the medium, new information should be presented in connection to learner's Background Knowledge to stimulate Motivation and help learners see relevance of the information in their lives. When content is connected clearly with prior knowledge, learners retain information more efficiently into Long-term Memory. Structuring delivery of new information understandably, consistently, and in multiple ways also aid in maintaining learner Attention and can support learners who have lived through Adverse Experiences.

Use It In Your Learning Environment

When delivering presentations, instructors should use accompanying visuals to ensure maximum learning benefits by boosting both the verbal and visual channels of Working Memory. Relevant and clear visual presentations during verbal instruction signal learners to focus Attention on important information. When designing digital presentations for learners to access on their own, information should be outlined clearly and concisely to support learner autonomy. Products for designing visual presentations should include premade templates with accessible fonts and without distracting colors to ease Visual Processing and minimize potential issues stemming from poor Vision. Platforms for housing presentations should be clearly ordered sequentially with an intuitive design to ensure coherent connection between lessons.

Learning modules to be completed digitally should include an overview that connects the adult learners to the purpose and relevance of the learning, the overall structure of the learning experiences within the module, and should provide interactive learning opportunities to engage more deeply with the content and/or discussion boards for Social Supports. To minimize confusion and cognitive overload, digital designers should avoid long blocks of text, cluttered presentations, and an overabundance of images or graphics.

Factors Supported by this Strategy