Herbert Simon, famously wrote: Everyone designs who devises courses of actions aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones. The first two words in this quote are now the title of a recently published journal article (with Danah Henriksen and William Cain) in which we explore the mindsets that lead to learner autonomy. Full citation with link and abstract given below:
Henriksen, D., Cain, W., & Mishra, P. (2018). Everyone Designs: Learner Autonomy through Creative, Reflective, and Iterative Practice Mindsets. Journal of Formative Designs for Learning. doi: 10.1007/s41686-018-0024-6 [Link to PDF].
Abstract: Developing learner autonomy—or the ability to take charge of one’s learning—is a crucial element of teaching and learning and of design work. In this article, we argue that developing learner autonomy in students requires instructors to adopt a two-fold approach through a mindset rooted in creativity and reflective practice. We discuss the theoretical grounding for this mindset, and then situate our discussion by examining an award-winning hybrid-blended course about design thinking in an educational psychology and educational technology doctoral program. The course outcomes qualitatively demonstrated the ways in which students developed a perception of learner autonomy through their work in creating and implementing context-specific educational technology design solutions. We present and discuss evidence from our own formative reflective practice as instructors, along with evidence from students’ reflections, on how themes of learner autonomy emerged via our proposed pedagogical mindset.
Banner illustration by Punya Mishra