Although much talk abounds about the importance of change leadership and problem solving for professionals, little systematic alteration of professional preparation programs is accompanying criticisms of professional education. This article reports the results of an ongoing study of instructional reform in educational administration. A design studio for instructional leadership required students to apply content knowledge acquired in their traditional course of study to school problems and defend their proposed actions. Students confronted the difficulties of reflective practice under pressure to act. In the studio, they were held accountable for projecting outcomes and defending their actions as administrators to their future peers and superiors. The study results reveal some outcomes of changes in course structures grounded in cognitive theories of adult learning and action. They affirm the importance of research on the cognitive processes of problem solving and reflection and questioning techniques that stimulate their effectiveness. The results present a complex, yet realistic, view of changes in professional preparation and general university study that can enhance parallel attempts to improve professional practice and carry learning into life. Such changes provide options for reform within courses currently taught and of entire conceptual structures underlying university degree programs in the professions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Administration