The concept criticality has emerged over the past 25 years as central to the field of adult education. At the same time, its conceptualization has been problematic to participants in the field because of vagueness and ambiguity of the term criticality and associate expressions and collocations of the word critical, such as critical thinking and critical reflection. The purpose of this study was to address the problem that it was not known how, and to what extent, the concept criticality was understood in the field of adult education. Response to the research question, "How is criticality conceptualized in the scholarly literature of adult education?" builds upon but transcends what has been contributed to understanding of criticality in adult education. This study applied a qualitative method of concept analysis in an approach that was designed to assess the maturity of the concept and its readiness for further research and utilization in the academic field of adult education. The method included a review of all available scholarly literature of the field from the past ten years. From that review, relevant literature was identified for analysis of the nature and physiology of the concept, as well as its characteristics, preconditions, boundaries, outcomes, anatomy, and pragmatic utility. Results of this study provide a clear, value-free conceptual foundation and working definition that will serve as a heuristic for further research, theory building, and practice.
|Advisor:||Ward, Jason K.|
|Commitee:||Berg O'Toole, Carol, White-Johnson, Adair F.|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-A 69/07, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Adult education, Continuing education, Language|
|Keywords:||Adult education, Concept analysis, Critical theory, Critical thinking, Criticality, Language|
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