128
TAMMY BRIANT
ing them to this process during law school allows them to have the skills
they need to employ it in their careers. When faced with problems in their
careers that challenge their values and beliefs, they may employ transfor-
mative learning on their own to handle the conflict.
Using Edward Taylor’s six essential elements of transformative learning,
law schools can purposefully and intentionally create transformative learn-
ing environments and experiences. These experiences can be used to train
students to critically reflect on their own assumptions and those of others.
Law schools should facilitate dialogue that discusses this critical reflection,
and encourage transformation using holistic approaches that pay attention
to environmental and societal contexts. The facilitator should provide an
authentic environment by building a trusting, honest, and safe relationship.
Law school can act as the “disorienting dilemma” described by Mezirow
and serve as a catalyst for a transformative learning experience that can
stick with those students through graduation and into their careers. First-
year research and writing courses and, specifically, student-faculty con-
ferences offer a prime opportunity for transformative learning. However,
upper-level seminar courses, interviewing, counseling and negotiation, and
conflict resolution classes all lend themselves to transformative approaches
as well.
X. Conclusion
This essay has provided an overview of the purpose, essential elements,
and development of transformative learning theory, and provided examples
of how it can be incorporated into law schools. Law professors and admin-
istrators are encouraged to use Taylor’s six essential elements to incorpo-
rate the theory into their substantive and skills-based courses,
pro bono
,
1...,118,119,120,121,122,123,124,125,126,127 129,130,131,132,133,134,135,136,137,138,...304