Teaching for Transformation by Patricia Cranton
Communicative knowledge requires more intellectual investment as it introduces shades of grey into the conversation and requires individuals to talk to each other in order to establish the agreed-upon assumptions and abstracts they perceive in their world. Transformational knowledge is then described as using these other forms of knowledge to evaluate and critically analyze the information that is known to understand how it came to be known, what part is abstract, what part is concrete and how this knowledge functions to direct everyday behavior, among other things. This presentation immediately sets up a liberal approach to education that fosters the concepts of self-learning and negates the importance of facts and concrete knowledge. Throughout the article, Cranston blends the descriptive, evidence of her ideas as they occur in real life, and prescriptive, ways in which these modes of thought might be encouraged. However, these do not seem to be irresponsible or inaccurate as these descriptive passages are intended to illustrate the complex concepts she is discussing and paint a picture of how various forms of thought occur.
Her initial argument is based on only two studies, one of which states that transformational learning is the primary goal of adult education (64) and the other which outlines the three basic types of knowledge in such a way as to rank them in order of importance or intellectual investment. Much of the rest of her argument is based upon the findings of the same researcher who identified transformational learning as the ideal goal with some criticism brought forward briefly by other researchers and further support offered by the authors own previous studies. While the presentation of the various elements of transformative learning is given – i.e. steps that an individual engages in as they are encountering a transforming .experience – and a suggestion is made that numerous studies have been made into this process with a variety of results that have been summarized in this report, no indication is made of where these other studies might be found or who might have conducted them.