How Do We Learn What We Know? (Or Vice Versa?)

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Originally published in Contemporary Psychology: APA Review of Books, 1993, Vol 38(11), 1203–1204. Reviews the book, Knowing and Reasoning in College: Gender-Related Patterns in Students' Intellectual Development by Marcia B. Baxter Magolda (1992). In this volume the author reviews the literature on the cognitive development of students and then presents her approach known as the “epistemological reflection model.” This is then followed by four chapters each describing one stage or pattern of reasoning and knowing. The chapters contain many quotations from interviews illustrating students' comments about their perceptions of their roles as learners, the roles of their instructors, and the way they, as students, decide what to believe. The author begins with an interesting and detailed description of how she began the research that eventually resulted in this volume. She also describes the ways in which her own thinking changed in regard to both the methods that she would use to undertake her study as well as the changes that occurred in the types of thinking patterns on which she would concentrate in her study. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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