This chapter describes how the research methodology and methods in Baxter Magolda’s twenty-five-year longitudinal study and the four-year longitudinal Wabash National Study of Liberal Arts Education (WNS) culminated in the identification of a detailed model of self-authorship development reflected in Figure 1. Using an inductive approach consistent with the constructive-developmental paradigm in both longitudinal studies yielded rich data sets from diverse participants from which to identify nuances in self-evolution in general and self-authorship in particular. Over one thousand interviews from Baxter Magolda’s study and over nine hundred WNS interviews enable us to describe a detailed portrait of the evolution of meaning making during and after college. In this and subsequent chapters, we show how young adults’ capacities become more complex and adaptive over time and describe the strategies we have developed to assess and document these changes. In this chapter, we describe our analytical processes, how they evolved over the course of the projects, and the training processes we used with the research team to conduct and analyze WNS interviews.
ASHE Higher Education Report
Journal Article URL
Barber, James P., Development of the Ten Positions in the Journey Toward Self-Authorship (2012). ASHE Higher Education Report, 38(3), 37-52.