What is Transformative learning?
Transformative learning involves experiencing a deep shift in our thinking, feelings, and actions – a shift in our understanding of ourselves and our relationships with others and the natural world.
It can also involve shifts in our understanding of power, class, race and gender, body awareness, our visions of how we live our lives, and our sense of possibilities for social justice and peace and personal joy.
In the context of socio-ecological transition or deep adaptation, transformative learning is particularly focused on approaches to learning that generate transformative outcomes in both the inner and outer world, through both individual and collective transformations.
What Is Blended Learning?
Blended learning is considered a combination of traditional face-to-face modes of instruction with online modes of learning, drawing on technology-mediated instruction, where all participants in the learning process are separated by distance some of the time. (Skrypnyk et al, 2015, p. 62)
If you want to explore deeper on Blended Transformative Learning, we invite you to explore the BLAST guide. You can download a copy of the guide here. (Versions in French, German, Spanish, Romanian and Croatian)
Communities of Practice (CoP)
“CoPs enable people doing related work or facing similar challenges to share their knowledge and solutions and as a result achieve the greatest good for the greatest number.”
The BLAST CoP guide specifically addresses:
- how to create blended learning environments that combine virtual and face to face interaction
- how to build equitable, diverse and inclusive CoPs
- how to support transformative learning to take place
Davie Philip of Cultivate (Ireland) briefly describes the BLAST Community of Practice Guide. He describes what it covers and how it will be useful to many people involved in community-led sustainability and climate action. It will help to deepen their knowledge of how to create change through collective learning and innovation, and sharing of good and emerging practice in a variety of fields.
This guide is particularly for Trainers and Community Catalysts that are aiming to help initiate, catalyse or strengthen transition processes in communities, within organisations or networks, or at a system level – especially where they will be using both transformative learning methodologies and blended learning methods. This includes adult educators, facilitators, coaches and similar professionals, as well as change-makers, activists and civically engaged citizens interested in transformative adult learning opportunities. The framework is also intended to be useful for other stakeholders, such as funders and policy makers who are seeking to support those that more directly catalyse, expand or accelerate transition processes.
The framework is presented in a format that distinguishes the competences needed for:
- Participants in Learning & Action
- Trainers & Catalysts
- Hosting – Organisations, Venues and Networks
Justice, equity, diversity and inclusion: as a regenerative living system
Justice, Equity, diversity and inclusion (JEDI) is a context specific developmental process. Therefore this ‘methodology’ uses the metaphor of ‘key ingredients’ necessary for enriching and deepening the JEDI experience of your group or project so that it is a regenerative living system. The goal here is to help groups and organisations take steps for inclusion to become the norm and for diversity to thrive; for top down or tokenistic solutions to be replaced with a willingness to learn and grow together towards a shared vision for an open, inclusive and compassionate culture.
Justice: Dismantling barriers to resources and opportunities in society so that all individuals and communities can live a full and meaningful life.
Equity: Allocating resources to ensure everyone has access to the same opportunities. Equity recognizes that advantages and barriers – the ‘isms’ exist.
Diversity: All the differences between us are based on whether we experience advantages or encounter barriers to opportunities.
Inclusion: Fostering a sense of belonging by centering, valuing and amplifying the voices, perspectives and styles of those who experience more barriers on their identities.
Please explore the complete BLAST JEDI Pathway tool here
We invite you also to explore the Toolkit of Shared Tools and methods established by the BLAST project, to be used in conjunction with the content above.
And listen to our series of interviews of Personal Practitioner Journeys in Transformative Learning. In them we hear personal journeys of working in the fields of personal and social-ecological transformation. Our interviewees describe how their experiences, expertise and learning-facilitation roles in these fields have evolved and deepened over time.
Interview #1 (30 minutes) is with May East of Gaia Education and Steve Charter of IPEN (International Permaculture Education Network). In particular they describe their understanding of the patterns that emerge in this transformative learning field and in the personal and collective journeys this involves.
Interview #2 (27 minutes) is with Paula Haddock (now Paula Sonrisa-Sturmer) of Ulex Network and Mindfulness Trainer and Dr Anna Storck of the Institute for Global Integral Competence. They describe how their experiences, expertise and learning facilitation roles in these fields have evolved and deepened over time, their particular fields of work in transformative learning, and the deep personal and social change that arises from that.
Interview #3 (23 minutes) with Claudine Villemot-Kienzle of Centre for Human Emergence and Claudian Dobos of Transition Romania. They describe how they have developed their own particular focus and methods as critical contributions for meaningful inner and outer transformation.