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Autobiography and narrative in personal development planning in the creative arts

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Personal development planning (PDP) is being promoted to enable students to examine their practices, beliefs, behaviours and achievements in the fullest context of their learning. This article will summarize developments to date with progress files, consider what PDP is, including the tension between its external, sociocultural role (the demonstration of skills and assets to others) and capacity to enhance internal, individual understanding. The special contribution made by creative arts education in shaping PDP will be explored. Ambivalence in the sector as to both PDP and writing will be considered in the light of experiments with alternative writing practices. In particular, these will relate to the emergence of personal narrative and authorial voice, detectable in both the visual product and the learning process. Drawing on my research into autobiography and PDP I will propose a two-tier narrative framework for PDP that can be both motivating for the learner and productive as a metacognitive tool.
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Keywords: auto/biography; key skills; narrative; personal development planning (PDP); progress files; writing

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Surrey Institute of Art & Design, University College

Publication date: 2004-09-01

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  • How can art, design and communication aid teaching? Do these teaching methods work better in certain fields of study? Focusing on arts and media-based subjects, and encompassing all areas of higher education, this journal reveals the potential value of new educational styles and creative teaching methods.

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