Being a Learner: A Virtue for the 21st Century

British Journal of Educational Studies 53 (3):359 - 374 (2005)
Lifelong learning is something which one does for oneself that no one else can do for one: it is a public and personal human activity, rather than private or individualistic. One of the features of the education system is the paucity of a language for learning as process and participative experience. Personalised learning requires a sense of the worth-whileness of 'being a learner' - a virtue in the 21st century. A sense of one's own worth as a person is essential to understanding one's identity as a learner. Research suggests the human capacity to learn can be understood as a form of consciousness which is characterised by particular values, attitudes and dispositions, with a lateral and a temporal connectivity. This 'consciousness' has several dimensions which are all related to becoming a person, with a learning identity. They also enable the learner to become aware of and appropriate what is of worth and map onto the sorts of core values that learning communities espouse. Awareness of self and of one's own worth as a person is a necessary condition for 'becoming a learner' and for identifying and engaging with 'what is of worth'. Furthermore, a sense of self as a learner is formed in relationship, and understood as one learns to tell one's own story, as a participant in the conversation of the learning community. Character is the way in which we refer to that quality of personhood in which there is rooted the capacity to change and learn over time.
Keywords citizenship education  virtue  personalised learning  character  lifelong learning  values  transformative learning
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1467-8527.2005.00300.x
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 22,570
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Gregory Bateson (1972). Steps to an Ecology of Mind. Monograph Collection (Matt - Pseudo).
G. E. M. Anscombe (1957). Intention. Harvard University Press.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Dennis J. Schmidt (2002). Why is Spirit Such a Slow Learner? Research in Phenomenology 32 (1):26-43.
Jane Mathison & P. Tosey (2008). Riding Into Transformative Learning. Journal of Consciousness Studies 15 (2):67-88.
Andrew Davis (2008). Ian Hacking, Learner Categories and Human Taxonomies. Journal of Philosophy of Education 42 (3-4):441-455.
John Ozolins (2006). Teachers and Learners. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 4:111-115.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

11 ( #338,347 of 1,938,522 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #288,361 of 1,938,522 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.