chapter  2
14 Pages

A Dispositional View of Transfer

There seems to be a trend toward reinterpreting what are usually thought of as mental abilities or cognitive skills and treating them instead as dispositions. Schrag (1988) and Brell (1990) both argued for reinterpreting critical thinking in this way-treating it as a virtue, like honesty and kindness, rather than as a mental skill like deductive reasoning and problem solving. Perkins (1991) made a similar proposal regarding creativity, offering what he called a dispositional view-in which creative accomplishment is seen as depending on a combination of personal characteristics, such as persistence and willingness to take risks, which thus dispose a person to do creative work. I offer a dispositional view of transfer. This is a somewhat different matter from the previous ones, because transfer is not usually thought of as an ability but rather as an event, and the potential for transfer is not usually thought of as residing in the learner but rather in whatever has been learned.