Longitudinal data on young adults’ learning and
development integrate the multiple dimensions of
development described throughout this volume.
Chapter authors’ recommendations are synthesized
to guide faculty in understanding and using students’
meaning-making to enhance learning.
Teaching to Promote Holistic
Learning and Development
Marcia B. Baxter Magolda
The authors in this volume clarify that the learning expectations we have for college students require complex intrapersonal, interpersonal, and cognitive levels of development. The student stories in each chapter illustrate the more typical ways in which college students make meaning and their journeys toward the more complex ways of making meaning we hope they will achieve during college. Higher education has been clear about the desired destination of this journey, or the nature of Ignelzi’s metaphorical farm, that we want students to inhabit; educators have been less clear about the farms on which students currently live and how to map the journey from one to the other. The intent of this volume is to bring students’ farms to life for educators and to guide educators in offering students maps and company to reach new farms.
The first eight chapters explore various dimensions and facets of development in-depth and with particular groups of students to deepen understanding of the multiple ways in which college-age adults interpret their experience and thus how they learn. This chapter integrates these dimensions and facets of development to emphasize a holistic perspective of student development and learning. I draw on stories from my fourteen-year longitudinal study of young adults’ meaning-making to form a holistic view of learning. I also synthesize the authors’ recommendations for accessing students’ meaning-making and creating inclusive, effective learning environments for all students.