Expanding Conceptions of Experiential Learning: A Review of the Five Contemporary Perspectives on Cognition
This article offers a comparison of five distinct currents of thought apparent in recent scholarly writing addressing experiential learning, defined here as a process of human cognition. These five perspectives were selected for their heuristic value in expanding conventional notions of experiential learning, ranging from conceptions of reflective constructions of meaning to psychoanalytic, situated, emancipatory, and ecological theories of learning. A rationale for this typology is outlined, and the problems of classification and comparison of multiple perspectives are discussed. The five perspectives are each described briefly, outlining their view of knowledge, learning, and teaching; their understanding of relations between knower, culture, and knowledge; and critiques and questions raised by other perspectives. Caveats about the limitations and presumptions of such a typology are declared along with invitations for response and critique.