Margaret DiVito Walden University March 2010 Jack Mezirow’s Transformational Learning
Mezirow’s Definition of Learning The process of using a prior interpretation to construe a new or a revised interpretation of the meaning of one’s experience in order to guide future action.
Frames of Reference Habits of Mind Points of View …these operate below our level of awareness… …there is more awareness for these…
Habits of Mind A set of assumptions – broad, generalized, orienting dispositions that act as a filter for interpreting meaning. PREDISPOSITIONS
Points of View Immediate specific beliefs Feelings Attitudes Value judgments
Four Levels of Transformative Learning • Existing frames of reference • Learning new frames of reference • Transforming a point of view • Transforming a habit of mind
Mezirow’s Steps in Transformational Learning Disorienting dilemma Self-examination Critical assessment of Assumptions Recognizing that others have gone through a similar process Exploring options for formulating a new plan of action Acquiring knowledge and skill Trying out new roles Renegotiating relationships Building competence Reintegration back into one’s life based on the new, transformed perspective
Criticism of Mezirow’s Transformational Learning Egocentric Cognitive emphasis Incompleteness
References Brock, S. (2010). Measuring the importance of precusor steps to transformative learning. Adult Education Quarterly, (60) 2, 122-142 . DOI: 10.1177/0741713609333084 Collard, S. & Law, M. (1989). The limits of perspective transformation: A critique of Mezirow’s theory. Adult Education Quarterly, (39) 2, 99- 107. Kelly, R. (2010). Transformative learning: Q & A with Patricia Cranston. Faculty Focus, January 19, 2009. Retrieved from http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/instructional- design/transformative-learning-qa-with-patricia-cranton/ Merriam, S. (2004). The role of cognitive development in Mezirow’s transformational learning theory. Adult Education Quarterly, (55) 1, 60-68.
Merriam, S.B., Caffarella, R.S., &Baumgartner, L.M. (2007). Learning in adulthood: A comprehensive guide. CA: Jossey-Bass. Mezirow, J. (1978). Education for perspective transformation: Women re- entry programs in community college. New York Center for Adult Education, Teachers College, Columbia University. Mezirow, J., & Associates. (2000) Learning as transformation: Critical perspectives on a theory in progress. CA: Jossey-Bass. Stansberry, S. & Kymes, A. (2007). Transformative learning through “teaching with technology” electronic portfolios. International Reading Association, (488 – 496). DOI: 10.1598/JAAAL.50.6.6
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