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Title: Vocation as a Means of Expressing Spirituality: A Life History Approach
Authors: Ghosal, Lori Nero
Advisors: Barbara Sparks, Committee Chair
Keywords: adult education
higher education
spiritual development
life history
Issue Date: 1-Mar-2005
Degree: EdD
Discipline: Adult and Community College Education
Abstract: This life history study explores five individuals' journey toward spiritual growth and vocation and the implications this has for adult and higher education. In-depth interviews enhanced self-reflection and new understanding of participants' life courses, defining moments, influencing people and experiences, as well as obstacles to spiritual growth and vocational path. Three main themes were discussed: the understanding and experience of spirituality, the influences on spiritual pathways, and the awareness and process of vocation. Conclusions indicate spiritual growth as a maturation process through exposure to diversity, awareness of interconnections, and cognitive/emotional readiness through personal growth. Adult and higher education practitioners need to recognize the importance of spiritual development in the learning process, the role of informal and self-directed learning in the development of spirituality and understand how they can facilitate further growth.
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