Learning, Trajectories of Participation and Social Practice
This article argues that personal meaning should be considered
important when addressing issues of learning.
It is claimed that meaningful learning is not primarily
intra-psychological, as suggested by humanistic psychologists
and parts of cognitive psychology, but is an
integrated part of the person’s participation in various
social practices. Inspired by critical psychology and
situated learning, it is suggested that in order to comprehend
what people in everyday life experience as meaningful,
we have to understand the concerns subjects
pursue across different contextual settings and the kind
of conduct of everyday life they try to realise. A case
example from an ongoing research project about how
baker apprentices learn their trade is outlined in order to
exemplify some of the theoretical considerations. Two
baker apprentices, Peter and Charlotte, are presented to
illustrate how they orientate their learning activities in
the bakeries according to their future participation in the
baking trade and in relation to the conduct of everyday
life they wish to pursue.
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