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Transformative Learning Theory: Learning By Transforming And Changing


  • Burhan Akpinar

    () (Firat University)


In this manuscript, Mezirow’s transformative learning theory is studied. In this context, the definition, dimensions of transformative learning, the roles of teachers and learners in transformative learning and its curricular scopes are analyzed. In the study held as analyses of the literature, the following results are reached: Transformative learning theory is formed with a synthesis of critical reflection and hermeneutics. Its philosophic background is based on existentialism and humanism. It also has some signs of constructivism, postmodernism and theory of chaos, and philosophers like Habermas, Freire and Sartre. Learning is a reconstruction of consciousness according to this theory that brings new dimensions to educational concepts. The class is a society of individuals who seek to make new meanings of experiences. The learner is a reflective and empathetic participant; and teacher is a catalyst of transformation. The curriculum is a transformating interaction in this theory. It is argued as a result of this study that this theory may contribute to education in issues like effective learning, changing/transforming as a whole class, and functional schooling. It is also found out that this theory may lead to new expansions in adult education and teacher education.

Suggested Citation

  • Burhan Akpinar, 2010. "Transformative Learning Theory: Learning By Transforming And Changing," Anadolu University Journal of Social Sciences, Anadolu University, vol. 10(2), pages 185-198, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:and:journl:v:10:y:2010:i:2:p:185-198

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    Transformative Learning; Learning by Transforming; Inservice Teacher Training; Adult Education;

    JEL classification:

    • Z00 - Other Special Topics - - General - - - General


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