Learner-centered principles espoused by the American Psychological Association (APA) built on research of the last three decades suggest that learning does not simply entail coordinated cognitive processes. These 12 principles portray factors associated with learning as essential parts of the portrayal of learners as active creators of their own best answers and solutions. Some of the issues related to active, volitional learners are summarized, with attempts to integrate then in terms of the discovery of personal meaning. The following types of personal meaning that may occur are considered: (1) increased sense of relation of new knowledge to personal events in the learner's life; (2) increased sense of self as learner; (3) increased sense of efficacy related to the capability to use knowledge; and (4) increased expectancy for success and sense of commitment to extend learning. The paper is organized around the idea that the discovery of personal meaning in learning is a vital part of the learning process. The learner is an active constructor of such meanings and may find them more durable than the particular knowledge gained in cognitive fashion. One table lists types of personal meaning that may be acquired. An attachment lists the APA principles. (Contains 61 references.) (SLD)
Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mid-South Educational Research Association (21st, Knoxville, TN, November 11-13, 1992).
American Psychological Association; Learner Centered Instruction; Meaningfulness