David A. Kolb

Most Influential Person

American psychologist and philosopher

Why Is David A. Kolb Influential?

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David A. Kolb was born in 1939 in Moline, Illinois. He earned his B.A. from Knox College, before achieving his M.A. and Ph.D from Harvard University. He has contributed to a number of books that are still used to train and develop educational professionals today.

Kolb is most famous for his Experiential Learning Model (developed in partnership with his colleague, Ron Fry) and his Learning Styles Inventory. He has theorized that learning preferences exist on two different continuums: Active Experimentation to Reflective Observation and Abstract Conceptualization to Concrete Experience. By placing learners in their proper place on these continuums, you identify the learner as being one of four types of learners: convergers, assimilators, accommodators, or divergers. While somewhat critically evaluated and challenged by some experts in the field, his learning styles inventory have provided a framework for future educators to evaluate the ways students learn.

He is the chairman of the company he founded, Experience Based Learning Systems, Inc. and an Emeritus Professor of Organizational Behavior at Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. His work on experiential learning, particularly his book titled, Experiential Learning: Experience as the Source of Learning and Development. continues to inform project-based, hands-on learning programs today.

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According to Wikipedia, David Allen Kolb is an American educational theorist whose interests and publications focus on experiential learning, the individual and social change, career development, and executive and professional education. He is the founder and chairman of Experience Based Learning Systems, Inc. , and an Emeritus Professor of Organizational Behavior in the Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio.

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