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Public Speaking and Adult Learning Principles

If you haven’t already–as a public speaker, you should dedicate yourself to a lifetime study of adult learning principles. It will pay you colossal dividends.

And there’s a lifetime of “adult learning stuff” to learn. Today we’ll look at one such principle; Elaborative Rehearsal.

It’s more than practice. It’s a proactive approach of making the most out of past learning in order to maximize new learning.

For your audiences to make the most out of this proven learning and memory technique, you will have to teach them. Most adult learners just aren’t aware of these methods. Here are five tips you can pass along to all of your audiences.

1. Proper Note Taking. For a learner’s notes to enhance one’s memory, it is important that a learner is able to record the speaker’s ideas in their own words. And, as a presenter you need to tell them so.

2. Paraphrasing. This is like the above note taking, except that care is given to the actual words the note-taker uses. Ideally, the words the learner replaces the speaker’s with has equal or added meaning to the learner.

3. Predicting. It will help a listener to project a speakers message into the future. This “projection” allows a person to simulate the material they are learning in the theater of their mind.

4. Questioning. A good Q and A will help your audience learn your principles better. Challenge your audience to come up with creative and meaningful questions, and then dig into them together.

5. Summarizing. There much talked about the concept but it is seldom used in most learning environments. Plan a specific, “Now what did we learn here today?”

There’s a lot more to the idea of Elaborative Rehearsal than these five tips, and we’ll discuss them in future articles.
The “take-away” today is the need for the public speaker to “train” their audiences how to use elaborative rehearsal to their greatest learning benefit.

One thing that will help your audiences to be able to “practice” your message is a strong visual representation of your message. The presentation world calls these graphics by many things, Process Models, Method Maps, Matrix’s, and Hierarchy Models, etc.

Wayne Kronz

Wayne Kronz is the host of http://MethodMap.blogspot.com. Visit it today for the best free, online information about the design and use of visual aids in public speaking. You’ll discover many actual models you can use in your next presentation plus a host of videos showing you how the top pros are using visual aids in their public speaking. And a lot more!

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