"Education becomes transformational when an institution or a teacher creates an environment that encourages learners to integrate God’s truth into their fundamental perspectives, core values, relational patterns and habits of life, thereby opening themselves to God’s transforming power."

Defining Transformational Learning

When the philosophy and practices of transformational learning form the ethos of the school preparing students for ministry, then those students will experience the kind of learning that can have a transformative impact on the church and society.


The term "transformational" is used in a variety of ways today and with different applications, so it becomes is necessary to define what we mean in GATE by "transformational learning" and "transformational education."


As used by GATE, "transformational education" is not a program that educators can prescribe and implement, and "transformational learning" is not something we can impose on our students or that we can ensure will result from our curriculum; we do not have the power to transform students....

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...Rather, transformation is the work of the Holy Spirit that takes place as a learner chooses to embrace and obey God's truth. While educators and theological training institutions do not have the power to transform students, what they can do is to create an environment—through personal modeling, curricular and course design, and in-class and out-of-class interaction—that encourages learners to integrate God’s truth into their fundamental perspectives, core values, relational patterns and habits of life, thereby opening themselves to God’s transforming power. Institutions and teachers that create such environments can be described as engaged in transformational education. When learners are transformed by God’s grace, this transformation impacts every aspect of life and is lived out in community.

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In GATE, we believe that the proper educational environment is crucial to facilitating transformational learning. While it is possible for such environments to be created in isolation in individual classrooms, the impact of true transformation occurs when entire schools work together to create a learning atmosphere that is transformational. This entails the cooperation of the the school's entire staff, from cleaners to administration, from teachers to deans and principals. When the philosophy and practices of transformational learning form the ethos of the school preparing students for ministry, then those students will experience the kind of learning that can have a transformative impact on the church and society.