Facilitating Brave Space Through Transformative Virtual Learning in and Beyond Post-secondary Academic Settings


In this paper, we reflect as a community on the significance of virtual learning and the need to foster the concept of brave space within academic environments. Focusing on the importance of flattening hierarchical constructs and respecting individuals’ lived experiences to cultivate truly transformative learning, together we explore elements of creating an inclusive and collaborative setting where educators and learners can freely contribute their perspectives, driven by their own axiologies, ontologies, and theoretical frameworks, and are motivated by a deeper purpose in learning. By recognizing and challenging the conventional hierarchy prevalent in academia, we suggest, a more egalitarian learning environment can be promoted that values equity, diversity, inclusion, and decolonization with the incorporation of lived experiences. While virtual platforms sometimes render personal connections more arduous to achieve, through acknowledging diverse backgrounds, identities, and personal narratives, the learning community can create a richer, more transformative learning environment. In our experience, transformative learning opportunities promote personal growth, self-reflexivity, and the development of inclusive mindsets. Fostering transformative learning and a deeper engagement with knowledge encourages participants to connect their learning to real-world contexts. Through reflexive inquiry, we examine the role of inclusive pedagogical approaches, the promotion of dialogue and active listening, and the integration of diverse perspectives into approaches fostering brave spaces in transformative learning. Implementing such strategies allows the creation of a learning environment that values and nurtures transformative learning journeys, ultimately fostering a true brave space for personal and collective growth.

Author Information
Rajesh Verma, Golden Gate University, United States
Marie-Audrey Simard, Independent Scholar, Canada
Hanna Thu Huong Ha, Yorkville University, Canada
Peter K. Arcand, Independent Scholar, Canada
Joanie Crandall, University of Northern British Columbia, Canada

Paper Information
Conference: BCE2023
Stream: Learning Experiences

This paper is part of the BCE2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Verma R., Simard M., Ha H., Arcand P., & Crandall J. (2023) Facilitating Brave Space Through Transformative Virtual Learning in and Beyond Post-secondary Academic Settings ISSN: 2435-9467 – The Barcelona Conference on Education 2023: Official Conference Proceedings https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2435-9467.2023.60
To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2435-9467.2023.60

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon