Cognitive Coaching

This is the ninth post in a series based on my reading of Coaching Approaches & Perspectives edited by Jim Knight. This post is based on sections of Chapter 4: Cognitive Coaching. You can filter my posts to find all the posts in the series by using the Coaching category.

Chapter 4: Cognitive Coaching is written by Jane Ellison and Carolee Hayes. The two authors established the Center for Cognitive Coaching to share the methodology.

Cognitive Coaching is a  methodology used to build the thinking capacity of participants. “The mission of Cognitive Coaching is to produce self-directed persons with the cognitive capacity for high performance both independently and as members of a community.” (Costa & Garmston, 2002, p. 16 as cited in Knight, 2008, p. 73).

The mission shows that Cognitive Coaching is results driven, focused on developing educators that are self-managing, self-monitoring and self-modifying so that they are able to live and work as individuals and as members of systems without any tension between those selves.

Self-managing refers to the ability to assess your existing circumstances, identify goals, and specify clear indicators of what a successful outcome would look like. Self-monitoring involves being able to listen, observe and collect data to see how well you are progressing towards your goals. Self-modifying refers to being able to use observations and data to modify thinking, actions, and plans to be able to better meet goals.

One sentence in this chapter gave me pause: “Cognitive Coaching expands the traditional work of an educator to include developing internal cognitive, social, and emotional capacities within others” (Knight, 2008, p. 74). I look forward to learning more about this. I’m also attracted to the concept that the self and system are interconnected, interdependent, and inseparable. I’d like me life to be whole, not broken up into pieces and I am curious to learn more about holonomy, which is a new word for me.

Book Citation: Knight, J. (Ed.). (2008). Coaching: Approaches and perspectives. Corwin Press.