Learning is an active mental process that entails acquiring, creation and sharing of knowledge and information. The nature of teaching and learning process occurs naturally in either formal or informal settings. Day to day experience accord human beings opportunities to share and generate new knowledge or better still put into practice the already acquired skills. Learning has been defined by different scholars differently. However, the most consistent description considers learning as a life-long process of acquiring, sharing and generating new knowledge (Rezai, 2012). Learning in nursing education has a lot of importance attached to it. To being with, nursing practitioners begin at development and progression of nursing knowledge and skills and subsequent application into health practices to boost insight for nurses and empower them to solve problems (Rummel, Ethan. (2008; Ferguson & Day, 2005).Rezai, (2012) asserted that another benefit of learning for any individual was for healthy development of the brain.
According to Slagter et al (2011) learning enhances the brain capabilities as an intellectually stimulating activity because the mental functioning is preserved and brain-cell network are strengthened. Dent, & Harden (2001) found that there is a strong correlation between learning and an individual’s personal confidence when applying the learned concepts. It also transforms a person to be all-rounded with capacity to put into practice new skills and solve problems that would otherwise be seen as complex. To a great majority, learning is a process of self-fulfilment and results in euphoria and satisfaction while additionally changing one to end up more effective. O’Shea (2003) learning influences the direction of thought and acceptance of well-conceived theories and facts. This essay will give a concise description of learning models and effective learning in nursing education that contributes to acquisition, creation, transfer and application of learnt concept among the learner.
Learning and learner-centred models
Over the years, a number of theorists attempted to relate learning, growth and cognition. The most commonly used theories of learning include; social, behaviourist, constructivist, cognitive and situational theories beside motivational, descriptive, humanistic and identity theories. Behaviourist informs the learning process from the perspective of the thought processes and the resultant behaviours being sustained through conditioning. This does not depart far from Vygotsky’s theory of social development that appreciates the importance of social environment in learning processes. Both theories are also closely associated with Jean Piaget’s theory of cognitive development as reference point in analysing the concept of learning (Rothgeb, 2008; Quinn & Hughes, 2007).
The teacher is a very crucial player in the process of learning and imparting knowledge to learners. The main role of the teacher includes tailoring the teaching and learning resources and environment to shape the mental orientation of the learner (Haghani, Masoomi, 2011). The teacher plays the role of moulding the learners’ personality and behaviours to take up future responsibilities. The influence over the learner in long-lasting and should be beneficial to the individual learner and the society at large. Despite the perceived influence and great impacts the teacher has on the learner, the teachers’ personality orientation may either enable the learning process or be a determent to learning.
Systems approach to education clearly defines the ultimate role of the teacher in creating a climate for development of the parts or subsystems and contributes to the overall climate including interpersonal relationships in the learning institution (Hajbaghery, 2005). The teacher is in charge of the ethos within the learning environment that includes tact assumption about imparting values and by extension, member’s behaviour. Neeraja (2003) educators are relied upon to serve as teachers, tutors, or companions. A perfect educator guides understudies suitably without pushing them excessively. A perfect educator supports the the students spirit by propelling and empowering them while refraining from reprimanding them.
The teacher is a facilitator in the learning process and has a tacit mandate to guide the learners in unleashing their full potential in a learning environment that taps individual learners’ potential for meaningful use (Hean, 2009). The ideal teacher will create in students the desire or thirst to engage in self-directed learning activities without too much pressing by creating learning culture that is student-directed. All this begins when the teacher understands learner’s individual needs and creates a friendly and highly interactive classroom culture. Young and Paterson (2007) observed that the teacher-student the relationship plays a role in determining the learners’ overall academic achievement and sustained quality learning experience. Therefore, teacher professionalism and genuine interest in the learner is the mark of an ideal teacher who is also a role model for the learner…………………………..