ERIC Number: EJ862466
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 61
Examining the "Whole Child" to Generate Usable Knowledge
Rappolt-Schlichtmann, Gabrielle; Ayoub, Catherine C.; Gravel, Jenna W.
Mind, Brain, and Education, v3 n4 p209-217 Dec 2009
Despite the promise of scientific knowledge contributing to issues facing vulnerable children, families, and communities, typical approaches to research have made applications challenging. While contemporary theories of human development offer appropriate complexity, research has mostly failed to address dynamic developmental processes. Research typically fragments or splits the human organism into "investigatable" units--biology, behavior, culture, genetics, relationships, innate modules of mind, etc.--resulting in the inevitable loss of the person as an integrated, embodied center of agency. This is problematic for generating knowledge that is usable because in educational practice the unit of analysis and application is the whole person. We discuss the problems inherent to generating usable knowledge when theory and research methodology are so deeply incongruent. In an illustrative example, we adopt a "person-in-context" perspective to demonstrate how research has led to the mischaracterization of maltreated children as immature, disorganized, and dysregulated. Using this "person-in-context" perspective in research can facilitate generating usable knowledge.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A