The fundamental aim of education should be to support and develop students’ identities, those configurations of self that provide us with vitality, agency and meaning and give us a sense of ourselves as a force that matters in the world (Bracher, 2006)

The particular gap I found in educational offerings, which my work now successfully fills, is ‘subjective knowledge’: knowledge of the self, or self-theories.  This, I found, is the knowledge shared differentially in the informal education that takes place in the home (the ethnic identity development process) but which enslaved Africans and their descendants were deprived of when uprooted from their cultures of origin and resocialised racially as ‘blacks’.  This enforced re-socialisation process, gradually, over hundreds of years, evolved into what today is known as ‘black culture’ defined as ‘an externally imposed cultural disorder that has taken on a life of its own’.  In much the same way that black culture has evolved to take on a life of its own, so too have other cultures evolved unconsciously over time.  The Developing Agentic Professional Identities (DAPI) portfolio of modules draw on Dewey’s idea that in every generation democracy needs to be reborn and education is the midwife.

Modules offered from the DAPI portfolio guides learners in developing meta-cultural competence through seeking answers to the Human Centred Unconditional Passionate Appreciation (HCUPA) question: what does it mean for us to be whole, fully alive, experiencing, choiceful and free human beings?  Researching this question enables a higher level of understanding of what it actually means to be human facilitating more reflective engagement with the everyday choices we make and largely unconsciously.

The DAPI portfolio consists of 5 modules:

  • Ethical Practice
  • Developing Human Resources
  • Human Resource Development for Diversity
  • Working with Emotional and Spiritual Intelligence
  • Transformational Diversity Leadership

The DAPI modules are particularly relevant to the current global context of the 21st century because of the identity formation learning and teaching approaches utilised.