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TLT Knowledge Log

Theory of flow

Posted by C Elizabeth Thomas on April 20, 2007

My good colleague Glen has introduced me to the theory of flow. Coming from the work of someone whose name I can’t spell… the theory of flow is meant to explain what happens when a person becomes so engaged in a learning process… and so self-directed… that they continue to work at the mastery process with great focus, discipline and without concern for what’s going on around them. This theory of flow has something to do with motivation and also with interest or expectations for success… almost the notion of belief in oneself and ones’ interest and ability.

I struggle with how this applies to orchestrating change. In a doctoral program in educational leadership and change… we’re about change. Some are willing to experiment… when provided direction. This indicates either a sense of vulnerablity about the process or a lack of skill. Probably a bit of both. Some say they don’t see the relevance to their work. I’m not sure how having access to the body of knowledge through technology and participating in the creation of new content isn’t relevant to every doctoral student’s work. I think the big challenges are: fear of failure and exposure of weaknesses that have little to do with technology. Critical thinking and analytic skills, good writing skills and collaborative instincts are part of this environment. If we are unsure of ourselves in those areas, particulalry in the midst of the rigors of doctoral studies, closing the motivation gap can be a real challenge.

Those who stop themselves do themselve a disservice.

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One Response to “Theory of flow”

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