Comparison between Transformative and Informative learning methods

An educational system isn’t worth a great deal if it teaches people how to make a living but doesn’t teach them how to make a life.  ~ Author Unknown

There are two different strategies of learning and adaptation (Piaget), when we are receiving new knowledge, experience, trainings, teachings, insights etc:

Informative learning method Transformative learning method
We Assimilate new in our close system of value, “box”, paradigm etc without changing our own self according to new information, situation, experiences, insights etc We Accommodate new in our open system of value, paradigm by voluntary changing our own self according to new information, situation, experiences, insights etc

In this article, we are going to see more details about these two Informative learning systems.

Informative learning or Assimilation

Informative learning or Assimilation, or Additive learning systems, are increase what we already know, adds to our skills, extends already established capacities by bringing new knowledge to an existing worldview, frames, “box”, reference, paradigm etc without changing our own self according to new information, situation, experiences, insights etc

Informative learning conceptions (Saljo 1979)

  1. Learning as a quantitative increase in knowledge.
  2. Learning is acquiring information or “knowing a lot”
  3. Learning as memorizing. Learning is storing information that can be reproduced.
  4. Learning as acquiring facts, skills and methods that can be retained and used as necessary.
  5. Learning as making sense or abstracting meaning. Learning involves relating parts of the subject matter to each other and to the real world.
  6. Learning as interpreting and understanding reality in a different way. Learning involves comprehending the world by re-interpreting knowledge.

Transformative learning or Accommodation

“Transformative learning involves experiencing a deep, structural shift in the basic premises of thought, feelings, and actions. It is a shift of consciousness that dramatically and irreversibly alters our way of being in the world. Such a shift involves our understanding of ourselves and our self-locations; our relationships with other humans and with the natural world; our understanding of relations of power in interlocking structures of class, race and gender; our body awarenesses, our visions of alternative approaches to living; and our sense of possibilities for social justice and peace and personal joy.” O’Sullivan (2003)

Plus “+” and minus “–“ of two learning method

Informative learning method Transformative learning method
+ there are no any limitations on participants numbers
+ not ask from speaker so much psychological and therapeutically skills, specific personal character etc
- there are strict limitations
on Listeners numbers
– ask from speaker so much psychological and therapeutically skills, specific personal character etc
- such kind of learning generally do no help
learners change our own self
+ such kind of learning generally can help a lot to learners change our own self

Resistance Factors in learning method

Informative learning method Transformative learning method
Authoritarian way of teaching, more pressure, less engorgement, support, practical training. Learners generally feel a lot of pressure on him/her by own old, past experiences, lacking a space to grow. Broader minded way of teaching, less pressure, more engorgement, support, practical training, space to change, trainer by skilful means helping Learner to grow in our own realisations, insights and find our own path in depths of heart.

Graphic of Learning processes

Crisis – time and space for our paradigm shift

Sequence of paradigm shift process

1st De-stabilisation for paradigm shift

  • Unpredictable process
    • Effected by casual remarks as much as deliberate intervention
  • Has two necessary elements
    • Declaration
    • Application

2nd Disorientation for paradigm shift

  • Has cognitive and affective components
  • May include
    • Depression
    • Frustration
    • Anger
    • Guilt
    • “Attempted apathy” (not denial)

3rd Facilitating Environment

  • Facilitating environment still required in initial stages

4th Re-orientation for paradigm shift

  • Resembles additive learning
  • New learning still fragile
  • Diminishing echoes of whole sequence

Trainer, Instructor, Leader etc Characteristics and Roles, which Facilitate Transformational Learning method:

  • Encourage students to reflect on and share their feelings and thoughts in class.
  • Be holistically oriented, aware of body, mind, and spirit in the learning process.
  • Become transcendent of his own beliefs and accepting of others’ beliefs.
  • Cultivate awareness of alternate ways of learning.
  • Establish an environment characterized by trust and care.
  • Facilitate sensitive relationships among the participants.
  • Demonstrate ability to serve as an experienced mentor reflecting on his own journey.
  • Help students question reality in ways that promote shifts in their world-view.

Student Characteristics and Roles, which Facilitate Transformational Learning method:

  • Students must be free to determine their own reality, as opposed to social realities defined by others or by cultural institutions.
  • Students must be ready for and open to change.
  • Those with a wider variety of life experiences, including prior stressful life events, are likely to experience more transformation.
  • Cultivate the ability to transcend past contexts of learning and experience.
  • Students must be willing and able to integrate critical reflection into their school work and personal life.
  • Students must be able to access both rational and affective mental functioning.
  • Have sufficient maturity to deal with paradigm shifts and material which differs from their current beliefs.

Course Content and Instructional Activities and Environments to Facilitate Transformational Learning method:

  • Critical reflection,
  • Rational discourse,
  • Constructivist approach to course design and instructional objectives,
  • Inquiries into the origins and destinies of individual existence,
  • Mind exploration (dreams, out-of-body, near death experience, meditation, altered states of consciousness, hypnosis),
  • The mysteries of human suffering and purpose,
  • Paradigms of consciousness and healing from other cultures (Chinese medicine, shamanism, Yoga, etc.),
  • Guided imagery,
  • Sensory awareness development (Feldenkrais, hypnosis, etc.),
  • Dance and movement,
  • Breath work,
  • Touch (giving and receiving),
  • Atmosphere of openness, safety, and emotional support,
  • Instructors and students have full information and are free from coercion,
  • All students have equal opportunity to assume various roles,
  • Students can become critically reflective of assumptions,
  • Instructors and students are empathetic and good listeners, and are willing to search for common ground or a synthesis of different points of view.

Professional Challenges and Ethical Considerations for Trainers to Facilitate Transformational Learning method:

  • Transference and counter-transference among students and instructor,
  • Confidentiality,
  • Sexual attraction,
  • Cognitive dissonance,
  • Repressed memories emerging into consciousness creating stress,
  • Burnout and intensity beyond the student’s ability to cope,
  • Appropriate supervision with minimal interference in the process,
  • Conflict between students,
  • Code of ethics for the classroom environment,
  • Inappropriate touch,
  • Precipitating transformational learning in a learner who is not prepared or does not fully understand its possible consequences,
  • Providing adequate transformational learning to students who are eager and receptive to personal change and evolution,
  • Is an instructor qualified to decide which, among a learner’s beliefs, should be exposed to transformation,
  • There can be a fine line between education and therapeutic intervention; should a teacher function as therapist to his students?
  • For more details Please check web

Material was collect long ago, by using google search. Sorry, for not be able quote sources. :-( Our input here is only to select and show certain aspect of all materials.

Presentation of same material in pdf format 2.4Mb View or Download.

Your ever well-wisher with love and encouragement BVG Janaka das
17 Jun 2011

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About BVG Janaka das

BVG Janaka das is the Vaishnava monk and he has international exposure across geographies, cultures, sciences, and Spiritual Practices, that he is bringing out the best in the participants and empowering them “Live Powerful Life what They Love to Live. He has experience as a leader of Transformative and Experiential Education, Balanced and Healthy lifestyle Education, of Personality Development, group dynamics and team building group seminars-workshops. He has experience and knowledge in coaching, consulting, leading, creating and managing innovative educational programs and management projects on site and online.
This entry was posted in Balanced and Healthy lifestyle Education, Balanced and Healthy lifestyle Philosophy and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Comparison between Transformative and Informative learning methods

  1. kwgrid says:

    Excellent.

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