Some education curriculum models have been defined as holistic. Such theorists believe in the ability to integrate comprehensive learning using broadreaching course objectives that originate from thinking about the whole student and all his or her learning needs. In one holistic curriculum model, Mayes (2003) examines curricula from seven different landscapes that connect philosophy, developmental student needs, and strategies. He calls them:

1. Organisimic landscape

2. Transferential landscape
Bertrand theories of practice in education

Figure 1.2 Bertrand theories of practice in education, 2003.

3. Concrete affiliative landscape

4. Interpretive–procedural landscape

5. Phenomenological landscape

6. Unitive–spiritual landscape

7. Dialectic–spiritual landscape

Not all of these holistic teaching approaches will serve the reader of this text; these various landscapes are heavily woven into philosophy and would take significant time to understand and then use in the world of affective teaching within nursing. However, Mayes's phenomenological landscape offers significant points in relation to affective teaching. Mayes's (2003) discussion is highly complex, but it is possible to see the potential for how affective strategies are foundational in the curriculum and instruction that is imbedded into the aesthetic–phenomenological characteristics. He discusses Maslow, Dewey, Greene, and Nodding, addressing some aspect of self-realization within the educational system using the aesthetic– phenomenological approach. Nursing has used aesthetics such as poetry, film, music, case studies, and pictures for many years as a means for creating selfawareness on the part of students. It has also been used for more complex awareness as found in intersubjective knowing. All of these approaches are explored in depth later in the text.


The following sections discuss the risks that an affective teacher takes in some academic settings. These risks are primarily professional in nature, and many are the result of political issues within higher education as well as the
perceptions of faculty members of academic freedom. Given the nature of affective teaching and its ties to self-reflection and self-understanding, there is also value in examining whether a teacher is providing affective education or therapy in a classroom. Thus, it should be noted that although there are risks in teaching affectively, there are also potential ways to mitigate these risks via the approach in the classroom.

Various risks have been discussed for faculty who pursue affective forms of teaching, and some research exists for how it has been addressed in different classroom settings. In an earlier writing (Ondrejka, 1998), it was found that faculty and students both recognized that faculty are taking some degree of professional risk when engaging in affective teaching.

There also appears to be a political component that influences affective teaching methods. The Chronicle of Higher Education has published several historical cases, one at Colby College where the department gave the instructor in question tenure with a 4 to 1 vote. Later, the tenure committee overruled the decision with a 3 to 6 vote because of angry letters sent to the administration from some students. Defenders of the educator were very outspoken when they said, “Colby got rid of him because administrators were worried about angering parents, who pay close to $30,000 annually for their children to attend the college” (Leatherman, Nov. 1, 1996, p. A13). In this case, the professor lost, and it was directly related to his affective teaching style.

At Oakland Community College, another educator received an administrative complaint and a charge of sexual harassment from a student who felt his teaching methods were offensive and “X-rated” (Wilson, December 12, 1997, p. A14). His direct discussion of various psychological phenomena, such as the castration anxiety theory of Freud, were topics that created the controversy. Because of previous complaints by students, this educator provided the class with a written disclaimer, stating, “If controversial concepts and words bother you, be forewarned” (p. A14). This disclaimer was his attempt to warn students about the presentation of certain human phenomena that are currently labeled “politically incorrect.” In the past, students opted for another section of this course if they disliked this teaching style. Given the current social climate, however, it is not too surprising that the recent student complaint was related to discussions of sexuality or some aspect of sexual thought with no self-accountability for his or her inner underpinnings for such discomfort.

Spitzberg (1987) presented a host of political pressures that can influence the curriculum as a control or expansion mechanism. His discussion is not optimistic regarding curricular innovations because of a steady undercurrent of conservatism within educational institutions in general. Spitzberg reported Kerr's view that more rapid change will occur through the development of new institutions with different views and missions, arguing that we should not expect current institutions to make anything other than iterative changes. These conservative views certainly provide a perspective of risk for faculty who might threaten the stability of funding, influential families, or
even the mainstream of income from the students themselves by implementing innovative changes that address affective literacy.

< Prev   CONTENTS   Next >