The purpose of this assignment is to synthesize and incorporate the reflections, learning, and activities about wisdom gathered through the semester. Students are encouraged to write an academic research paper in the form of a biography of a wise individual (bell hooks
), emphasizing why the individual selected is or was wise, including assumptions about how the person developed his or her wisdom. The paper should be about 20 pages long (5,000 words+), and should follow A.P.A. published style guidelines.
1. Specify why bell hooks
is a wise person
2. include your assumptions about wisdom
3. justify your reasoning with what you have learned about or read about wisdom.
The following books must be cited in the paper:
Sternberg, R. & Jordan, J. (Eds.). The Handbook of Wisdom:
Psychological Perspectives. (2005). NY: Oxford Univ. Press.
Brown, W. S. (Ed.). (2000). Understanding Wisdom: Sources, Science & Society. (2000). Philadelphia: Templeton Press.
The following websites may be sited in the paper:
The Wisdom Research Network: http://wisdomresearch.org/
The Wisdom Page: http://wisdompage.com
The following modules are being covered in the class:
MODULE 1. Introduction. August 25-27 (3 days).
MODULE 2. Defining Wisdom. August 27-31. (4-5 days)
MODULE 3. Historical Perspectives. September 1 - 7 (1 week).
MODULE 4. Philosophical Dimensions. September 8- 14 (1 week).
MODULE 5. Psychological Investigations. September 15 – 21 (1 week).
MODULE 6. Cultural Connections. September 22 - Oct 12 (3 weeks).
Fall Break (October 13-18th)
MODULE 7. Wisdom and the Mind/Neurobiology.October 20 – 26 (1 week).
MODULE 8. Development/Critical Reflection. Oct. 27 – November 2 (1 week).
MODULE 9. Educational/Learning Connection. November 3 - 9 (1 week).
MODULE 10. The Loss of Wisdom. November 10 – 16 (1 week).
MODULE 11. Virtue and Ethics. November 17 – 23 (1 week).
MODULE 12. The Wisdom Paradox. November 24 - 30 (2 weeks).
Presentations of Research Papers. December 1- 14 (2 weeks).
The paper should demonstrate that the writer has knowledge of the following:
1. Develop a definition of wisdom.
2. Describe the historical perspectives on wisdom.
3. Classify the philosophical approaches to wisdom.
4. Explore wisdom as a worldwide cultural phenomenon, recognizing different ways of knowing.
5. Analyze their existing mental models about wisdom.
6. Explain possible neurological and biological bases for wisdom.
7. Critique many of the psychological investigations into wisdom
8. Describe and compare the developmental theories that may explain wisdom.
9. Identify the attributes of those who are known to be wise.
10. List and analyze the possible roles of mentors and teachers in the acquisition of wisdom, developing a possible lesson plan.
11. Explore wisdom’s connection to transformational learning principles.
12. Self reflect in a journal about the issues addressed in this course, including personal ideas and thoughts about wisdom.
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