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Assessing and Transformational Learning

Assessing and Transformational Learning

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Assessing and Transformational Learning

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  1. Assessing and Transformational Learning Alan Mandell SUNY Empire State College The National Institute 2012

  2. CAEL Report, 2011 Fueling the Race to Postsecondary Success 2010 • 62,475 students from 48 post-secondary institutions • 56% of PLA students earned a postsecondary degree within seven years • 21% of non-PLA students earned a postsecondary degree within seven years • PLA students who did not earn degrees were more persistent in terms of credit accumulation • PLA students who earned between 13&24 PLA credits saved an average of 6.4 months; those who earned more than 49 PLA credits saved an average of 10.1 months

  3. Final CAEL Report: Conclusions • PLA as a “powerful motivator, as a booster of self-esteem and self-confidence by validating students’ existing skills and knowledge, and as something that enhances student and alumni loyalty to the institution.”

  4. Mezirow’s Transformational Theory • “becoming critically aware of one’s tacit assumptions and expectations and those of others and assessing their relevance for making an interpretation” (2000, p.4) • “how we learn to negotiate and act on our own purposes, values, feelings, and meanings rather than those we have uncritically assimilated from others” (2000, p.8) • “reformulating reified structures of meaning by reconstructing dominant narratives” (2000, p.19)

  5. Phases of meaning becoming clarified • A disorienting dilemma • Self-examination with feelings of fear, anger, guilt, or shame • A critical assessment of assumptions • Exploration of options for new roles, relationships, and actions • Planning a course of action • Acquiring knowledge and skills for implementing one’s plans • Building competence and self-confidence in new roles and relationships • A reintegration into one’s life on the basis of conditions dictated by one’s new perspective (2000, p. 22)

  6. Creating Protected Learning Environments • “Central to the goal of adult education in democratic societies is the process of helping learners become more aware of the context of their problematic understandings and beliefs, more critically reflective on their assumptions and those of others, more fully and freely engaged in discourse, and more effective in taking action on their reflective judgments.” (2000, p. 31)

  7. Works Cited • Klein-Collins, Rebecca (2010). Fueling the Race to Postsecondary Success. Chicago: CAEL. • Mezirow, Jack (and Associates) (2000) (eds.). Learning as Transformation: Critical Perspectives on a Theory in Progress. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. • Other potentially useful sources: • Brookfield, S. (2005). The Power of Critical Theory. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. • Herman, L. and Mandell, A. (2004). From Teaching to Mentoring. London and New York: Routledge. • Mezirow, Jack (1991). Transformative Dimensions of Adult Learning. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. • Mezirow, J. and Taylor, E. (eds.) (2009). Transformative Learning in Practice. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.