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From coach training to coach education: Teaching coaching within a comprehensively evidence based framework

OE Laske International Journal of Evidence Based Coaching and Mentoring 2006

This paper outlines the conceptual framework for coach education used at the Interdevelopmental Institute (IDM) that focuses on changes in adult cognition and socialemotional capability. The framework derives from research by Piaget, his followers in the Kohlberg School at Harvard University, and the Frankfurt School (Critical Theory). In the framework coaching is seen as a way of changing other minds by way of consulting to clients’ mental process (process consultation). Material for coaching is found in the documented tendency of adult learners, coaches and clients alike, to embrace ever more sophisticated thought forms that aid them in dealing with the complexity of real life issues. The author argues that research-based coach education should supersede coach training by strengthening capabilities grounded in the cognitive and social-emotional development of adult learners. Opening and changing minds is seen as a precondition of bringing about lasting behavioural change in others, and thereby improving performance, not only in coaching but in coach education as well. The timeliness of the developmental approach to educating coaches lies in the fact that coach training is presently in a transition to adopting more research-based foundations. However, in the successful coach training organisations now vying for survival, these foundations are being introduced ad hoc and eclectically since they were not initially considered. By contrast, new programmes are needed that, from the outset, are grounded in research findings like the one presented here.

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