This tenth anniversary edition of Knud Illeris’s classic 2008 text is an updated and definitive collection of today’s most influential learning theorists, now containing additional chapters from John Hattie and Gregory Donoghue, Sharan Merriam, Gert Biesta and Carolyn Jackson. This book brings together world-renowned experts, who each present their understanding of what learning is and how human learning takes place, addressing the social, psychological and emotional contexts of learning.

In this clear and coherent overview, Professor Knud Illeris has collated chapters that explain both the complex frameworks in which learning takes place and the specific facets of learning. Each international expert provides either a seminal text or an entirely new précis of the conceptual framework they have developed over a lifetime of study, such as adult learning theory, learning strategies, and the cultural and social nature of learning processes.

Elucidating the key concepts of learning, Contemporary Theories of Learning provides both the perfect desk reference and an ideal introduction for students; it is an invaluable resource for all researchers and academics involved in the study of learning, and provides a detailed synthesis of current learning theories… all in the words of the theorists themselves.

chapter 1|14 pages

A comprehensive understanding of human learning

ByKnud Illeris

chapter 2|14 pages

Learning to be a person in society

Learning to be me
ByPeter Jarvis

chapter 3|17 pages

What “form” transforms?

A constructive-developmental approach to transformative learning
ByRobert Kegan

chapter 4|20 pages

Expansive learning

Towards an activity-theoretical reconceptualization
ByYrjö Engeström

chapter 5|17 pages


Learning as creative imagination
ByBente Elkjaer

chapter 6|14 pages

Adult learning theory

Evolution and future directions
BySharan B. Merriam

chapter 7|17 pages

A model of learning

Optimizing the effectiveness of learning strategies
ByJohn A. T. Hattie, Gregory M. Donoghue

chapter 8|15 pages

Transformative learning theory

ByJack Mezirow

chapter 9|10 pages

Multiple approaches to understanding

ByHoward Gardner

chapter 10|14 pages

Affective dimensions of learning

ByCarolyn Jackson

chapter 11|13 pages

Biographical learning – within the lifelong learning discourse

ByPeter Alheit

chapter 12|13 pages

The life history of the self

ByMark Tennant

chapter 13|10 pages

Culture, mind and education

ByJerome Bruner

chapter 14|15 pages

Experience, pedagogy and social practices

ByRobin Usher

chapter 15|15 pages

'Normal learning problems' in youth

In the context of underlying cultural convictions
ByThomas Ziehe

chapter 16|10 pages

A social theory of learning

ByEtienne Wenger

chapter 17|14 pages

Transitional learning and reflexive facilitation

The case of learning for work
ByDanny Wildemeersch, Veerle Stroobants

chapter 18|17 pages

Interrupting the politics of learning

ByGert Biesta