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Educational Learning Theories: Chapter 6 Introduction

Chapter 6 Introduction

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David Allen Kolb (1939- ), American "organizational" sociologist and educational theorist, is best known for his research into experiential learning and learning styles. Kolb received his Bachelor of Arts from Knox College in 1961, his Master of Arts from Harvard in 1964 and his Ph.D. in sociology from Harvard University in 1967. His research has its roots in the works of John Dewey, Kurt Lewin and Jean Piaget and the more recent work of Jack Mezirow, Paulo Freire and other theorists, focusing on how humans process experience. As part of that tradition, Kolb states that experiential learning is a process where knowledge results from making meaning as a result of direct experience, i.e., or simply "learning from experience." His experiential learning theory is a holistic or “meta-view” of learning that is a combination of experience, perception, cognition, and behavior. To explore and continue research on the experiential learning theory, David Kolb, along with his wife Alice Kolb, founded Experience Based Learning Systems (EBLS) in 1981. In addition to experiential learning, Kolb is also known for contributions in important research into organizational behavior, individual and social change, and career development and professional education. Kolb is an emeritus professor of organizational behavior at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.