Review Essay: Inviting Intuitive Understandings in Teaching and Professional Practices: Is Intuition Relationally and Culturally Neutral?

  • Gonzalo Bacigalupe University of Massachusetts
Keywords: assessment, cognition, decision-making, expert-knowledge, intuition, learning, professional expertise, teaching strategies


To analyze the construct of intuition, Terry ATKINSON and Guy CLAXTON draw from the research, teaching experiences, and theoretical expertise of faculty at the University of Bristol, UK. The fourteen chapters by the faculty at Bristol explore the often slippery notion of "intuition" and its impact in professional practice, which is generally (and there are exceptions) defined as a cognitive psychological strategy rather than a relational and cultural exchange. The last chapter is a critical summary by ERAUT who assesses the book as an outsider to Bristol. The book reads like a final report of discussions and research by the authors within a university context rather than a cohesive theoretical summary by a sole author. The result is inspiring as a review of overlapping ideas that inform the reader of the relevance of intuition in educational and professional settings within the context of educational reforms during the last decade in several countries. It will not be compelling reading for professionals attempting to learn a set of activities that would aid them in learning how to incorporate "intuitive practices" or for researchers searching for ways of clearly formalizing intuition as a well-defined theoretical construct that can be analyzed in various cultural contexts and/or institutional situations. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0204514


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Author Biography

Gonzalo Bacigalupe, University of Massachusetts
Gonzalo BACIGALUPE, Ed.D., is Associate Professor at the Graduate College of Education, University of Massachusetts Boston. As a practicing psychotherapist, he supervises, trains, and works with family therapists and other mental health professionals in academic contexts as well as human services institutions. As a qualitative researcher, his work has focused on the ways professionals and educators create discourses that foster and/or discourage collaborative participation with the people that they attempt to help. His research agenda includes studies on health disparities among Latinos in the U.S. and the discourses of political and family violence among professionals and patients in the U.S. and South America.
How to Cite
Bacigalupe, G. (2002). Review Essay: Inviting Intuitive Understandings in Teaching and Professional Practices: Is Intuition Relationally and Culturally Neutral?. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 3(4).
Methodology and Methods