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Using Journals to Enhance Learning in Business Classes

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Document pages: 18 pages

Abstract: This study investigates the process of using journals that incorporated holistic approaches (cognitive, affective, spiritual, multiple intelligences, and inclusive education) to infuse passion, engage students in deeper reflection, and foster higher level personal skills reflected in the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) Core Competencies. The journal writing process was used in a managerial accounting class that incorporated a service-learning experience. The course is an introductory level cost accounting course required of all business students. The use of journal writing as a teaching tool in this study provides substantial evidence of the student meaning making process as they reflected individually in journals and in collaboration with others. The holistic approaches used in this classroom journal writing experience evoked feelings and imagination using symbols, film, quotations, and open-ended questions. Students developed the ability to listen more deeply to the multiple perspectives of the diverse population within their class and in the community. Students became more self-confident and formed deeper connections with others as they worked together in the classroom and community in a nurturing and open environment. As they reflected deeply in journals about their service-learning experience mission and their own identities, values, and relationships they solved problems more effectively, communicated better, and deepened their understanding of business, accounting, and diversity issues. This growth in learning was perceived by participants and observed by me from their journals, discussions, and group work.

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