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College Media

Learning in Action

Edited By Gregory Adamo and Allan DiBiase

College Media: Learning in Action is a unique resource for journalism educators and students, media advisors, student personnel administrators, and students at any level  – undergraduate or graduate  – interested in learning theory and practice. Sixteen original, scholarly and diverse chapters encompass a wide range of methodologies that detail how students involved in college media organizations have formative experiences in a variety of different forms of publication and electronic media broadcasting. In part, the volume is assembled to help students and educators alike justify their practice and involvement at a time of change when new forms of social media, pressure to quantify learning outcomes, and budget issues in higher education are reshaping the undergraduate media landscape. This volume offers insight into how many journalism and media professionals began their careers and in doing so affirms the value of learning through direct experience and involvement.

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Chapter One: Experience and Learning (Allan DiBiase)


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Experience AND Learning


Because the need of preparation for a continually developing life is great, it is imperative that every energy should be bent to making the present experience as rich and significant as possible.

—Dewey (1985a, p. 61)


It’s a commonplace that humans can learn through their experience. But less commonplace to examine exactly what is meant by the concepts of “experience” and “learning” and how the two are related in real-life situations. This chapter will examine these issues using the work of the American philosopher John Dewey (1859–1952). Dewey was born in New England prior to the Civil War and died in the midst of the Korean conflict. He wrote about and taught education, philosophy, and public issues extensively at many levels globally. He engaged a wide range of publics in debate on the issues of his time. Dewey was especially interested in change and how people respond to it. Over his long lifetime Dewey experienced upheavals in American social life associated with the expansion of railroads into the west, the advent of electricity, telephones, cars, antibiotics, radio, refrigeration, the atomic bomb, television, airplanes, women’s suffrage, the great depression, many wars, and a host of other things too numerous to list. How did people respond to the rapid pace of change and what was its effect on their lives? How did they learn from these...

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