An exploration of transformation theory and the western tradition: a critical evaluation of a graduate studies class
Clark, Janice E.
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This qualitative study is an exploration of transformation theory, the Western tradition, and a critical evaluation of a graduate studies class at a university. It is an exploration of assumptions that are embedded in experience, that influence the experience and provide meaning about the experience. An attempt has been made to identify assumptions that are embedded in Western experience and connect them with assumptions that shape the graduate class experience. The focus is on assumptions that facilitate and impede large group discussions. Jungian psychology of personality type and archetype and developmental psychology is used to analyze the group experience. The pragmatic problem solving model, developed by Knoop, is used to guide thinking about the Western tradition. It is used to guide the analysis, synthesis and writing of the experience of the graduate studies class members. A search through Western history, philosophy. and science revealed assumptions about the nature of truth, reality, and the self. Assumptions embedded in Western thinking about the subject-object relationship, unity and diversity are made explicit. An attempt is made to identify Western tradition assumptions underlying transformation theory. The critical evaluation of the graduate studies class experience focuses upon issues associated with group process, self-directed learning, the educator-learner transaction and the definition of adult education. The advantages of making implicit assumptions explicit is explored.