Academic level – Undergraduate 3-4
Type of paper – Question/Answer
Topic Title – Educative Mentoring
Read the articles by Feiman-Nemser and Dennen and Burner
1. What does Feiman-Nemser (2001) mean by “educative” mentoring?
2. Based on your reading of the articles, what organizational conditions must be present for apprenticeship to be successful?
3. What are the traits or characteristics of professionals who lead by modeling (noting that not all experienced professionals have the temperament to lead by modeling)?
4. What if the apprentice is an “unwilling client” in this learning process? Be sure to include the concepts you’ve learned from persuasion and mentoring materials.
5. What similarities and differences do you notice among persuasion, mentoring, and apprenticeship?
Feiman-Nemser introduced the concept of “educative” mentoring to encompass a mentoring approach that goes beyond simply offering superficial advice. This variant accentuates the cultivation of the mentee’s sense of embracing thoughtful and analytical cogitation concerning their pedagogical methodologies (Feiman-Nemser, 2001). The mentor stimulates the mentees to cross a spectrum of strategies, critically evaluate foundational presumptions, and measure the repercussions of their selections on student erudition. Through fostering the mentee’s professional growth and self-direction, educative mentoring empowers them to become proactive learners and collaborators in their journey toward becoming educators.
An organization is required to foster a nurturing and inclusive environment that values professional knowledge and collaborative cooperation. It is crucial to allocate dedicated time and resources for mentoring and apprenticeship initiatives. The creation of clear frameworks and methods for matching mentors with protégés, maintaining ongoing support, and facilitating feedback becomes indispensable in this context (Dennen & Burner, 2007). Recognizing and honoring the wisdom of experienced practitioners inspires their active engagement in mentoring activities. Ultimately, an organization’s commitment to constant improvement and learning strengthens apprenticeship initiatives’ long-term success and effectiveness.
Professionals who lead by modeling possess distinctive traits and characteristics. They excel in demonstrating the desired behaviors and values through their actions, setting an example for others. Key attributes include integrity, consistency, and authenticity in their conduct, aligning with organizational values. Effective communicators convey expectations clearly and offer guidance without imposing it. Empathy and approachability are hallmarks, as they connect with team members and promote a positive work culture. Adaptability and openness to feedback also define them as they continually evolve and improve. While experience often helps, not all seasoned professionals have the disposition for this leadership style, as it demands a unique blend of skills and mindset.
When faced with an apprentice, addressing the challenges that may arise during their learning journey is important. To engage and motivate them, techniques and mentoring strategies are necessary. Mentorship involves listening and asking questions to understand the apprentice’s concerns and perspectives. Establishing a foundation and elucidating the advantages of the learning journey serve as strategies for surmounting potential resistance. The use of motivational interviewing techniques helps address any apprehensions the apprentice might have and fosters a problem-solving mindset. Building a foundation of trust and respect is crucial to ensure the participation and commitment of the apprentice throughout the learning process.
Persuasion involves influencing individuals to embrace beliefs or actions, often benefiting the persuader. Mentoring focuses on guiding and supporting professional and personal development, with a primary focus on learning and personal growth. Apprenticeship, meanwhile, takes the form of a learning framework in which an experienced expert (mentor) imparts wisdom and expertise to a novice (apprentice), facilitating skill acquisition within a field. Unlike persuasion, mentoring and apprenticeship place the protege at the center of attention, emphasizing empowerment and skill enhancement. While all three methods strive to influence learning and behavior, persuasion primarily seeks to change attitudes and actions, and mentoring focuses on fostering the mentee’s growth. At the same time, apprenticeship involves gaining hands-on expertise through knowledge transfer.
Dennen, V., & Burner, K. (2007). In handbook of research for educational communications and technology. Routledge.
Feiman-Nemser, S. (2001). Helping novices learn to teach. Journal of Teacher Education, 52(1), 17–30. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487101052001003