The Center focuses on Transformative Learning praxis in multiple domains and at multiple levels. Praxis refers to the ways in which we weave together theory and practice, action and reflection, in the service of learning. The Center’s work in Transformative Learning praxis is organized through projects in Education, Spiritual Practice, Business, Psychotherapy, Social Change and Civil Society, Governance and the Law, and the Arts.
"Any real change implies the breakup of the world as one has always known it, the loss of all that gave one identity."
Within higher education, both students and faculty are under intense pressure to acquire and transmit ever-increasing information. These circumstances result in a focus on competencies associated with informational learning. However, the performance deficiencies of higher education graduates as professionals suggests that something vital is missing. The future calls for integrated competencies that enable professionals to acquire and manage vast domains of information effectively enough to participate in wise and creative initiatives. Transformative Learning prepares graduates for this challenge.
At Meridian, care and attention have been given to the how of teaching and learning, as well as on what information should be transmitted. It is clear that in order for transformative learning to flourish, a well-sealed and supportive container is required. Toward this intent, Meridian has chosen particular formats and practices in constructing its learning environment.
A transformative learning community catalyzes experiences which are transformative and integrative. Transformative learning supports the inherently active and social nature of knowledge. Learning how to learn is at the heart of this approach.
When transformative learning is practiced in a supportive community, we are able to inhabit vulnerability and mystery. Through the recognition of each other's unique potentials and limitations, a collective process of creative inquiry unfolds. This approach builds relationships with reciprocity and mutuality; it is especially suited to the transformative dimensions of adult learning.
The Center for Transformative Learning hosted the 10th International Conference on Transformative Learning on November 1-4, 2012 in San Francisco. The first Transformative Learning Conference was convened in 1998 at Columbia University. Since that time, the conference has reconvened on a regular basis hosted by a different institution each time. The 2011 conference took place in Athens, Greece.