ERG SES G 11, Learning and Education
Current research project focuses on the problem of rethinking learning experience that leads to transformation of a personal approach towards learning and its application in practice. Research participants are graduates of universities. Their age range is between 22 and 29. They have been asked to recall and tell any remarkable and meaningful learning situation or moment that has served as a positive provocation or stimulus to rethink their learning.
The research question -what it means to experience provocation to rethink learning during university studies - has been formulated seeking to find out true lived experiences of Lithuanian students. Research question comes from personal and professional interests of the researcher, from pedagogical and general educational policy discourse, and scientific literature. Research question also reflects common European concern how to educate mindful and reflective persons, capable to live meaningful lives, to react adequately to challenges of contemporary world and contribute to the well-being of wider society.
Looking at the research question from psychological point of view, it is important to mention, that thinking and rethinking is hard, effortful, uncertain, sometimes dangerous, invisible, difficult to grasp. It is the reason why people not always eagerly involve in such type of activities (Willingham, 2009). Regardless this fact, children and young people are full of ideas, thoughts, wonder, questions, and like to think, express themselves and share. Unfortunately, too often they are caught by fear to be misunderstood, soon meet with conformism and thinking cliché (Lipmann, 2003; bell hooks, 2010).
Thinking about learning is even more difficult task, because learning, not always and not for all is considered a joyful, attractive and meaningful activity. And if it is, we know comparatively little what happens in students heads, as “ teachers do not often consider what their students think they are learning and why they think it might , or might not , make sense to learn it“ ( Kuhn, 2008, p.16). Real world is full of provocative opportunities for thought, wonder, but students not so often experience such possibilities in classrooms (Mills, 1998; Robertson, 2011). Learning as individually and socially constructed action lacks evidence about its transformative character – impact, change, improvement, as meaningful aspect in students’ lives ( Biesta, 2014).
Current research reveals, what has changed in the process of university studies and how this change happened. Also how it has been and is shared, used, applied in lives of former students.
The research is inspired by the ideas of Dewey J. (1900); Lipmann M. (2003) about role of education, school, thinking, and students active position in constructing personal understanding and meaning. Also by critical pedagogues - Freire P. (2000); Apple P. (1995); McLarren M.W.( 2007); Brookfield S., ( 2005, 2011), authors that highlight importance of independent personal position formation, critical thinking, social context and environment, reflective skepticism, questioning prejudices, exploring alternatives. Heidegger’s (1976) ideas about call for thinking and thought provoking thinking helped to understand the phenomenon of deep thinking. Arendt’s (1978) description of the life of the mind revealed secrecy of thinking and consciousness, knowledge and truth, power of reflection.
The research is based on transformative learning theory which emphasizes importance of autonomous, independent thinking (Mezirow, 1985, 1990, 2000,2006 ), role of formal education context that helps to construct and reconstruct meanings and understandings. (Dirkx, 2000, 2006). The research findings support Daloz L. (1986) and Arnett J.J (2000) ideas, that students, as emerging adults, find themselves in “in-between” situations, experience developmental transition towards new ideas, understandings, concepts and values.
1. Apple M. W. (1995) Education and Power. London and New York 2. Arendt H. (1978). The Life of the Mind. Harcourt, Inc. 3. bell hooks ( 2010). Teaching Critical Thinking: Practical Wisdom, Taylor & Francis 4. Biesta G.J. (2014). The Beautiful Risk of Education. Paradigm Publishers. 5. Brookfield S. (2005). The Power of Critical Theory: Liberating Adult Learning and Teaching 6. Brookfield S. (2011). Teaching for Critical Thinking: Helping Students Question Their Assumptions 7. Dahlberg K., Dahlberg N., Nystrom M. (2008). Reflective Lifeworld Research. Lund, Sweden. 8. Daloiz, L. (1986) Effective Teaching and Mentoring: Realizing the Transformational Power of Adult Learning Experiences (San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass). 9. Dewey J. (1916). Democracy and Education. http://www.ilt.columbia.edu/publications/dewey.html 10. Dewey J. Experience and Education. New York: Macmillan, 1971. 11. Dewey. J. (1900).The School and Society. The University of Chicago press 12. Dirkx J. M. (2000) Transformative Learning and the Journey of Individuation. Clearinghouse Digest, No. 223. (ERIC Documentation Reproduction Service No. 448305). 13. Dirkx J. M. (2006) Engaging Emotions in Adult Learning: A Jungian Perspective on Emotion and Transformative Learning. In E. W. TAYLOR (Ed.) Teaching for Change. New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education, No 109 (San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass), pp. 15–26. 14. Heidegger, M. (1976).What is called thinking? http://hermitmusic.tripod.com/heidegger_thinking.pdf 15. Friesen N., Henriksson K., Saevi T. (2012) Hermeneutic Phenomenology in Education. Method and Practice. Sense Publishers. Practice of research method. Vol. 4 16. Freire. P.( 2000).Kritinės sąmonės ugdymas. Vilnius. Tyto Alba 17. Kuhn D. (2008). Education for Thinking. Harvard university press. 18. Lipmann M. (2003). Thinking in Education. Cambridge university press. 19. Mezirow, J. (1985). A critical theory of self-directed learning. In S. Brookfield (Ed.), Self-directed learning: From theory to practice (New Directions for Continuing Education, 25). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 20. Mezirow, J. (1990). Fostering critical reflection in adulthood. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 21. Mezirow, J. (2000). Learning as transformation: Critical perspectives on a theory in progress. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. 22. McLaren P (2007). Life in Schools: An Introducion to Critical Pedagogy in the Foundation of Education. Pearcon Education, Inc 23. Mills J. (1998). Better Teaching through Provocation. College Teaching, vol. 46 no.1, p. 21-25 24. Van Manen M (2014) Phenomenology of Practice. Left Coast Press 25. Saevi T. (2013). Between Being and Knowing. Indo-Pacific Journal of Phenomenology. Vol 13(1), p.1-11. 26. Willingham D.T. (2009). Why Don’t Students Like School? Because the Mind Is Not Designed for Thinking. http://www.aft.org/pdfs/americaneducator/spring2009/Willingham(2).pdf
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.