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Are you meeting your audience's expectations? What research has to say may motivate you to redesign your next presentation. Scroll to the bottom article for this article.
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Engaging the Affective Domain and Why It Matters

What is the point of why you teach what you teach? 
I bet your answer is something like this: 

  • So people will know subject A more deeply

  • So people can do skill B in a more refined way

But what about the biggest motivator for people to actually learn new things, deepen their knowledge and do things differently? 
Values.
Values outcomes matter more than knowledge or skill outcomes. But they are almost never discussed. 
Why does it matter? 

By balancing your knowledge and skills presentation with a little values content, you'll begin to see audience members care that they know Subject A more deeply.
You'll begin to see that audience members will care more about doing Skill B in a more refined way. 
And caring is a foundational adult education principle.
However, most of the time, you'll see caring under the heading "need to know". Most instructors focus on the "know" part of that.
Values-directed learning content will focus on making learners aware of the "Need to" part of that statement. 

And it will take you a lot further down the road to actual change in your audience members.

Become a better storyteller

Every knowledge and skill has a story behind why it's done a certain way.
You probably have that one moment where you tried to do the thing your own way and experienced the consequences.
And now you know better.
You've probably shared it a hundred times with colleagues over drinks at the bar.
Or maybe it's from that moment that kicks you in the gut each time you remember it.
Maybe it's the one you've never shared, but that comes to mind each time you do the thing.
Get really good at telling that story.
You'll be surprised how engaged your scowlers and Twitter scrollers get after you do.

If you're planning to tell a story at a certain place in a presentation, create a slide that is a full-screen image.


Be sure it's high enough resolution to not get pixelly on the size screen you'll be projecting onto.

No bullets.
No text.
Just image.

This jars listeners lulled to inattention by your oh-so-too-texty bullet slides.
It also focuses all the attention in the room on your story.
And that's what you wanted all along, isn't it?
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"Engaging head, hands and heart"

These researchers use these terms (rather than cognitive, psychomotor and affective, as Bloom's taxonomies do) as organizing principles for their approach to setting learning goals.
Their research goal was to outline how this three-pronged approach can benefit learners.
Learners get the most out of programs when subject matter is complimented by direction about what learners can do with that knowledge.
However, learners are more likely to actually do the skill if their "passion and values are [translated] into behavior". 
These researchers state that this three-pronged integration that best serves the learner's needs is a vast departure from traditional institutional expectations and practices.
After all, aren't institutions just knowledge transmission entities?
Don't we teach the way we were taught, not the way we KNOW we should? 
Do you think most alumni donate because of how much knowledge they got from their university, or because they had transformative experiences there?

Loyalty
Passion
Highly skilled
Desire for refined depth of practice
Curiosity

These are not knowledge items.  
Yet these are terms we often use to describe the best practitioners in our fields.
Isn't that why we get invited to present at conferences and other trainings?
Because we are a respected practitioner in our field?
Isn't that what we'd ultimately like to see in the next generation of experts in our field? 

Let's start teaching in a more balanced way - one that engages head, heart and hands.
Without the heart, there's no motivation and no soul behind what we do.
And there's no reason why drones or robots shouldn't replace us as those technologies emerge.
Focus on values in our teaching increases the chance that one of our learners will actually do better and remember that they know better. 

And that is the point of education - knowing and doing better. 
The foundation of that, of course, is values.  


Sipos, Y., Battisti, B. and Grimm, K. (2008) ‘Achieving transformative sustainability learning: Engaging head, hands and heart’,International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 9(1), pp. 68–86. doi: 10.1108/14676370810842193.

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