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carl rogers, core conditions and education
Best known for his contribution to clientcentered therapy and his role in the development of counselling, Rogers also had much to say about education and group work.
contents: introduction | core conditions | carl rogers on education | rogers'influence | further reading and references | links. see, also : the groupwork pioneers series
Carl Ransom Rogers (1902 1987) was born in Oak Park, Illinois, and is best known as the founder of 'client-centred' or 'non-directive' therapy. Rogers initially studied theology - and as part of his studies acted as the pastor in a small church in Vermont. However, he turned to clinical and educationalpsychology, studying at Teachers' College of Columbia University. There he grew into clinical practice drawing on such diverse sources as Otto Rank and John Dewey (the latter through the influence of W. H. Kilpatrick - a former student of Dewey's). This mix of influences - and Carl Rogers' ability to link elements together - helps to put into context his later achievements. The concern with opening upto, and theorizing from experience, the concept of the human organism as a whole and the belief in the possibilities of human action have their parallels in the work of John Dewey. Carl Rogers was able to join these with therapeutic insights
Carl Rogers and informal education
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and the belief, borne out of hispractice experience, that the client usually knows better to how to proceed than the therapist.
Core conditions Thorne argues that it is not too simplistic to, 'affirm that the whole conceptual framework of Carl Rogers rests on his profound experience that human beings become increasingly trustworthy once they feel at a deep level that their subjective experience is both respected and progressivelyunderstood' (1992: 26). We can see this belief at work in his best known contribution - the 'core conditions' for facilitative (counselling and educational) practice - congruence (realness), acceptance and empathy). Carl Rogers on the interpersonal relationship in the facilitation of learning What are these qualities, these attitudes, that facilitate learning? Realness in the facilitator oflearning. Perhaps the most basic of these essential attitudes is realness or genuineness. When the facilitator is a real person, being what she is, entering into a relationship with the learner without presenting a front or a façade, she is much more likely to be effective. This means that the feelings that she is experiencing are available to her, available to her awareness, that she is able to livethese feelings, be them, and able to communicate if appropriate. It means coming into a direct personal encounter with the learner, meeting her on a personto-person basis. It means that she is being herself, not denying herself. Prizing, acceptance, trust. There is another attitude that stands out in those who are successful in facilitating learning… I think of it as prizing the learner, prizingher feelings, her opinions, her person. It is a caring for the learner, but a non-possessive
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caring. It is an acceptance of this other individual as a separate person, having worth in her own right. It is a basic trust - a belief that this other person is somehow fundamentallytrustworthy… What we are describing is a prizing of the learner as an imperfect human being with many feelings, many potentialities. The facilitator’s prizing or acceptance of the learner is an operational expression of her essential confidence and trust in the capacity of the human organism. Empathic understanding. A further element that establishes a climate for self-initiated experiential...