The Classroom-Based Courses
A trait that characterizes all the courses offered by the Institute is its elicitive* and participatory approach to teaching, one that has been painstakingly cultivated by the respective facilitators in each of their classes. MPI encourages this methodology where participants not only learn from their teachers but also from their fellow participants and from their own experiences and perspectives. This, in turn, supports an atmosphere of solidarity within the class that allows them to explore, share, affirm, question and voice out beliefs, opinions, ideas without the limitation that the fear of judgment can impose. To achieve this, facilitators do not limit themselves to lectures and PowerPoint presentations but go beyond the traditional means of teaching, utilizing a wide array of techniques and interactive activities such as role-plays, journal writing, class simulations, and field trips that would best involve participants in the process.
Each of the classroom-based courses is taught by at least two trainers, carried out in a complementary process of facilitation. The overall make-up of the courses, from design and methodologies to content, are all developed by the facilitators, always taking into consideration the needs of the participants. Facilitators also can invite resource speakers into their respective classes, which add more color and substance to the classes and provide valuable insights on a range of issues and topics about peace and justice.
Another way of expanding the learning environment in the classes is through organized fieldtrips arranged by the facilitators. These trips allow participants to interact with known experts and local partners in the Philippines and provide them with first-hand experience.
* “The elicitive approach starts from the vantage point that training is an opportunity aimed primarily at discovery, creation, and solidification of models that emerge from the resources present in a particular setting and respond to needs in that context.” John Paul Lederach, Preparing For Peace: Conflict Transformation Across Cultures, Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press, 1995.