Be Mindful of Your Discomfort: An Approach to Contextualized Learning

Angeni Bheekie, Mea van Huyssteen

Abstract


Service-learning creates a space for contextualized learning whereby students connect classroom concepts to real-world practices relative to their own frame of reference. These experiences occur within a societal status quo rooted within historical and social inequalities. Affective responses to encounters with inequalities are not routinely addressed within the learning outcomes of formal curricula. Thus, the pedagogy of discomfort calls for an awareness and a critical self-examination among educators and students of how their passive acceptance or non-acceptance of apparent social injustices has been shaped by the status quo. By incorporating affective learning into the reflective process, we realized that contradictions in South African society permeate students’ experiences in ways that are indicative of the status quo. Increased recognition of the potential of affective learning to address social injustices in higher education could enable efforts toward social transformation.

 


Keywords


affective learning, pedagogy of discomfort, reciprocity, service-learning, social justice

Full Text:

PDF

References


Aultman, J. M. (2005). Uncovering the hidden medical curriculum through a pedagogy of discomfort. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 10, 263-273. doi:10.1007/s10459-004-4455-2

Boelen, C., Dharmasi, S., & Gibbs, T. (2012).The social accountability of medical schools. Education for Health, 25, 180-194.

Boler, M. (Ed.). (1999). Feeling power. Emotions and education. New York. Routledge.

Boyte, H. (2003). Putting politics back into civic engagement. The Campus Compact Reader, Summer, 5-8.

Bramming, P. (2007). An argument for strong learning in higher education. Quality in Higher Education, 13(1), 45-56. doi:10.1080/13538320701272722

Branch, W. T. (2005). Use of critical incident reports in medical education. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 20, 1063-1067.

Bringle, R. G., & Hatcher, J. A. (1995). A service learning curriculum for faculty. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, 2(1), 112-122.

De Weerdt, S., Bouwen, R., Corthouts, F., & Martens, H. (2006). Identity transformation as an intercontextual process. Industry and Higher Education, 20(5), 317-326.

Eyler, J., & Giles D. E., Jr. (1999). Where’s the learning in service learning? San Francisco: Josey-Bass.

Flecky, K. (2011). Foundations of service learning. In K. Flecky & L. Gitlow (Eds.), Service-learning in occupational therapy education: Philosophy and practice (pp. 1-12). London: Jones Bartlett.

Frenk, J., Chen, L., Bhutta, Z. A., Cohen, J., Crisp, N., Evans, T., & Zuryak, H. (2010). Health professionals for a new century: Transforming education to strengthen health systems in an interdependent world. The Lancet, 376, 1923-1958.

Grant, E. (2005). The case for mindfulness in teaching and learning. South African Journal of Higher Education, 19(3), 555-565.

Hafferty, F. W. (1998). Beyond curriculum reform: Confronting medicine’s hidden curriculum. Academic Medicine, 13(4), 403-407.

Henry, S. E., & Breyfogle, M. L. (2006). Toward a new framework of “server” and “served”: de (and re)constructing reciprocity in service-learning pedagogy. International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 18(1), 27-35.

Jarvis, P. (2009). Learning to be a person in society: Learning to be me. In K. Illeris (Ed.), Contemporary theories of learning: Learning theorists … in their own words (pp. 21-34). New York: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.

Kegan R. (2009). What “from” transform? In K. Illeris (Ed.), Contemporary theories of learning: Learning theorists … in their own words (pp. 35-52). New York: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.

Kwizera, E. N., & Iputo, J. E. (2011). Addressing social responsibility in medical education: The African way. Medical Teacher, 33, 649-653.

Marx, C. (2002). Ubu and Ubuntu: On the dialectics of apartheid and nation building. Politikon: South African Journal of Political Studies, 29(1), 49-69.

Mayosi, B. M., & Benatar, S. R. (2014). Health and health care in South Africa: 20 years after Mandela. The New England Journal of Medicine, 371(14), 1344-1353.

Merriam, S. B. (2004). The role of cognitive development in Mezirow’s transformational learning theory. Adult Education Quarterly, 55(1), 60-68.

Mezirow, J. (1997). Transformative learning: Theory to practice. New Directions for Adult and Continuous Education, 74, 5-12.

Mezirow J. (1998). On critical reflection. Adult Education Quarterly, 48(3), 185-198.

Mezirow, J. (2003). Transformative learning as discourse. Journal of Transformative Education, 1(1), 58-63.

Rampele, M. (2012). Conversations with my sons and daughters. Johannesburg, South Africa: Penguin Books.

Skilton-Sylvester, E., & Erwin, E. K. (2000). Creating reciprocal learning relationships across socially-constructed borders. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, 7, 65-75.

Tutu, D. (2011). God is not a Christian. Chatham, UK: Rider Books.

Van Huyssteen, M., & Bheekie, A. (2013). Ubuntu: Interconnecting the African spirit with service-learning in pharmacy. In A. Smith Tolken & J. du Plessis (Eds.), 5th International Symposium on Service-Learning 2013: Service-learning across the globe: From local to transnational. Stellenbosch, South Africa: SunMedia.

Wong, Y-L. R. (2004). Knowing through discomfort: A mindfulness-based critical social work pedagogy. Critical Social Work, 5(1).

Zembylas, M., & McGlynn, C. (2012). Discomforting pedagogies: Emotional tensions, ethical dilemmas and transformative possibilities. British Educational Journal, 38(1), 41-59.


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.