Book Reviews

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The thought of writing a Book Review is so fascinating for me – I haven’t formally critiqued one since high school. It was a process I had to relearn, since I couldn’t recall the format and what to include in a novel review. The first novel I chose was one that hit closer to home, “Adult Development, Gender Education, and Learning,” written in Chinese by a university professor. The book was a great foundation novel; it gave me an understanding and overview of different learning styles, and the fundamental theories behind learning. I found the novel especially interesting in the aspect that the teaching components/methods remains consistent with common adult learning perspectives in North America, with an emphasis on empowering women (Lin, 2006). After reading this novel and through research, I learned that in terms of educational methods, the same teaching components are used throughout the world, regardless of geography (Zhenhui, 1999).

The second novel I chose to review was the classic text by Knowles – Self-Directed Learning: A Guide for Learners and Teachers. Given that this novel is over 40 years old, I still found the content in how Knowles defined self-directed learning to be up to date, as well as the resources section to be applicable to our own evaluating tools now. To me, this seems that the world of academia and how we learn are evolving, with that said, new research and learning styles have emerged, however, the older styles of learning and teaching are still used to this day (Combs, Sokolowski, & Banks, 2016).

Finally, the third novel is another classic by Knowles, The Adult Learner: The Definitive Classic in Adult Education and Human Resource Development. Strangely again, I found that this novel drew on the ideas of Self-Directed Learning, despite the older novel being 40 years old, it was still applicable to our current education theories and learning methods learned in INTAPT. In conclusion, after reading these three novels, I learned that educational theories and learning methods are more similar worldwide than I thought initially, and that even though our educational tools have evolved through the decades, learning theories are still applicable to our current education field (Gaffield, 2013). Knowing the essential learning theories made me understand how we learn, what methods adults learn best, and how to be a better facilitator.

Overall, this was an assignment I thoroughly enjoyed as it gave me an opportunity to pick up a hardcopy of a book I was interested in and spend leisure time reading it – something I haven’t done in as long as five years.


Combs, C. D., Sokolowski, J. A., & Banks, C. M. (2016). The digital patient: advancing healthcare, research, and education. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

Gaffield, C. (2013). History of Education. In D. Millette (Ed.), The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Knowles, M. S. (1975). Self-Directed Learning: A Guide for Learners and Teachers. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall Canada Inc.

Knowles, M. S., Holton, E. F., & Swanson, R. A. (2011). The Adult Learner: The Definitive

Classic in Adult Education and Human Resource Development (7th ed.). Oxford, United Kingdom: Elsevier Inc.

Lin, M. H. (2006). Adult Development, Gender Education, and Learning. Taipei, China: Wu-Nan Book Incorporated.

Zhenhui, R. (1999). Matching Teaching Styles with Learning Styles in East Asian Contexts.

Retrieved March 10, 2017, from


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