FocusMaking meaning of subjective experience
- Knowledge is … scope of possible experiences and meanings
- Knowing is … meaning
- Learner is … an experiencer (individual in social relationships)
- Learning is … meaning-making
- Teaching is … prompting reflection of meaning-making
SynopsisPhenomenology is a methodology to study subjective experience – but, because its strategies and assertions are so intertwined, it is appropriate to consider it as a discourse on learning. A century ago, Phenomenology was foundational in raising awareness of and offering alternatives Folk Theories through its rejection of mind/body, self/other, and other commonsense dichotomies. Phenomenology investigates how bodily experience is part of cognition, how intersubjectivity arises, and how the person and the world are mutually constitutive.
CommentaryPhenomenology begins with the convictions that “experience” is more complex than is commonly assumed and that Introspection can serve as the basis of a rigorous qualitative methodology. Criticisms of Phenomenology are typically focused on one of these two points, and usually the latter. Often criticisms are justified, as a great deal of research that is described as “phenomenological” falls short of the conceptual and methodological standards of the perspective.
Authors and/or Prominent InfluencesEdmund Husserl; Jean-Paul Sartre; Maurice Merleau-Ponty
Status as a Theory of LearningPhenomenology is more a methodology to study subjective experience than a theory of learning, but it has been generative of some key insights into learning that are integral to cutting edge Embodiment Discourses and Embeddedness Discourses.
Status as a Theory of TeachingPhenomenology is not a theory of teaching, although its emphases and methods have been adapted and used in therapy, to support self-awareness, and to inform teaching strategies.
Status as a Scientific TheoryPhenomenology is a core theoretical and methodological discourse in the human sciences. It is (1) explicit about focus, (2) aware of metaphors, (3) supported by a substantial body of validated evidence.
Please cite this article as:
Davis, B., & Francis, K. (2020). “Phenomenology” in Discourses on Learning in Education. https://learningdiscourses.com.
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