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Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

Meaning Making through Transformative Learning for HCA Education

Hayes, Catherine (2015) Meaning Making through Transformative Learning for HCA Education. British Journal of Healthcare Assistants. ISSN 1753-1586

Item Type: Article


This article provides an overview of the impact of transformative learning and how as a teaching strategy for HCAs it can enable mechanisms of self-reflection and critical introspection via means other than written reports, such as metaphors, storytelling, the exploration of life histories and their direct involvement in social action. By exploring the seminal theory of Mezirow, transformative education is framed as a mechanism of educating students that reproduces the ambiguity, and uncertainty they will face in everyday healthcare practice.

Discussion around the tensions between objectivity and affective engagement explores the processes by which students consciously reframe their thinking. The article ends with an insight into a small-scale research project on metaphors as a mechanism of visually stimulating self-expression.

The value of transformative learning is contextualised, amid recommendations from the Cavendish Review (2013) and the Frances Report (2013). The new regulatory framework for HCA education provides an ideal foundation for the development of the notion of meaning-making in education. The article also provides an overview of how staff can best facilitate transformative education in practice.

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More Information

Depositing User: Paula Normington


Item ID: 5584
Identification Number:
ISSN: 1753-1586
Official URL:

Users with ORCIDS

ORCID for Catherine Hayes: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2015 08:18
Last Modified: 05 Feb 2020 12:49