What is Ignatian Pedagogy?
The Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm
Image copyright © 2022 by Bridget Colacchio
At Loyola University Chicago’s Faculty Center for Ignatian Pedagogy, we have created a new image to represent a nuanced understanding and application of the IPP. Above, you see all five elements of the framework present in a new formation. Other visual representations convey a directional or ordered relationship between the five elements; our understanding of the IPP is more integrative.
You can see that context is clearly the background of the framework. As St. Ignatius directed, we always want to recognize how the time and space we occupy, and the socio-geo-political happenings of our day have relevance for our teaching and students’ learning. Context is constantly evolving and therefore must be under on-going consideration.
Experience, action and evaluation co-exist in the center of the framework. As others have conveyed, the lived experience of each individual in the learning space must be invited and embraced in a Jesuit education. We acknowledge that each person’s background and learning thus far in their lives has direct implications for their learning going forward. In addition, educators are called to provide impactful experiences for their students, where they can engage their minds, hearts, senses and imagination. Inviting everyone’s experience enriches the learning process for the whole group. Action points to the expectation within an Ignatian approach that we are to prepare our students – and ourselves – to find ways to utilize what we learn to inform meaningful actions to apply our education to our communities and society. Action also refers to the action that will occur within each educator and student, or transformation. In both ways, we are always striving to impact each person's development and growth in the direction of the greater good. Evaluation is a continual practice to pay attention to and critique the impact of our experiences and actions. The tradition invites us to ask "who am I becoming?" as we move through educational experiences. This allows us to lean in the direction of continual progress toward actualized excellence or magis.
Taken together, these processes of taking action based on what we have learned while evaluating the effect of our experience and action on ourselves and those around us are in continual interaction with one another, demonstrated by the overlapping circles. The glue that forms and informs those connections is the practice of reflection, shown in our model as the overlain center of the IPP, and the center of Ignatian education. With consistent, intentional and often guided opportunities for reflection on - and discernment of - our learning, our relationships, our actions and context, we can deepen our learning and discover ever more occasions to lead truly extraordinary lives.
See other examples of IPP images below.
Educational scholars, students and practitioners are invited to make use of this image in their work and to engage our team in dialogue about your own interpretations and uses of Ignatian Pedagogy. Please contact Bridget Colacchio (firstname.lastname@example.org) and use the following citation:
- Colacchio, B. (2022). Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm Revised Image for FCIP. Faculty Center for Ignatian Pedagogy at Loyola University Chicago. https://www.luc.edu/fcip/ignatianpedagogy/whatisignatianpedagogy/
See a description of the IPP’s five elements along with different representative images of the IPP in the following resources:
- Centers for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship. (n.d). Ignatian Pedagogy. Georgetown University. Ignatian Pedagogy - cndls website (georgetown.edu)
- Jesuit Institute. (2014). Ignatian Pedagogy: An abridged version of the document on teaching and learning in a Jesuit school. Jesuit Institute, London. Ignatian Pedagogy Abridged (Jan 14) 210x210 MASTER.pdf (jesuitinstitute.org)
- Mauri, A. J., Figueiredo, J. D., & Rashford, N. S. (2015). Ignatian pedagogy in the strategy classroom: Experience, reflection and action towards better managerial decisions. Journal of Jesuit Business Education, 6(1), 77-100.
- Merza, Gellért. (2018, September 26). The Method of Jesuit Education – 25th Anniversary of the Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm. Educate Magis. https://www.educatemagis.org/blogs/the-method-of-jesuit-education-25th-anniversary-of-the-ignatian-pedagogical-paradigm/
- Mountin, S., & Nowacek, R. (2012). Reflection in action: A signature Ignatian pedagogy for the 21st century.
- Reinhart Center. (n.d). Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm. Saint Louis University. Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm : SLU
Introduction Video: In this short video, FCIP Co-Director Bridget Colacchio provides a brief introduction to Ignatian Pedagogy.
For more information on Ignaitian Pedagogy, visit .
For more information on why Ignatian Pedagogy is valued in Jesuit Education, visit .