The affective domain is what controls our behaviour and as driving instructors we witness every day the way people behave on the road, driven by their opinions and beliefs. I have looked at Krathwohl's affective domain taxonomy (1964) and you can find more information by a simple google search.The taxonomy is presented in five stages:
Receiving describes the stage of being aware of - or sensitive to - the existence of certain ideas or material and being willing to tolerate them. Being self-aware is often the critical first step to becoming a coach. It is all about being non-judgemental where listening to others' ideas is important. This does not mean that you will agree with them but having the ability to receive information can change your own thinking.
Responding describes the second stage of the taxonomy and refers to a commitment in some small measure to the ideas and materials involved by actively responding to them. You would respond by complying or volunteering to try something new. You can imagine how important this can be when driver training and actively listening to your pupil's ideas and encouraging them to try something new.
Valuing means being willing to be perceived by others as valuing certain ideas. This is about valuing your pupil's thoughts and ideas and being seen to do so. This could also be about valuing road safety or the law that surrounds road safety. You might encourage your client to debate with you the values embedded in the highway code.
Organization is the fourth stage of Krathwohl’s taxonomy and involves relating the new information you have received and examining how it fits in with your own beliefs and values or those others might hold, such as friends and family.
Characterization means acting consistently in accordance with the values the individual has internalized. This is when your own feelings are your own and not part of someone else's opinions and values. In young people, their characters are still developing and making sense of the world is part of their education. How adults behave on the roads may come as a surprise to some new learners. Helping them make sense of how they will fit in is important or they just might feel they need to copy others rather than have their own beliefs and values.
In the next brief article about these learning domains I will look at the psychomotor domain - possibly the one we focus on the most. In the meantime, if you are interested in learning and development, you may want to look at our BTEC Level 4 course in Coaching for Driver Development where we focus on how thoughts and feelings affect our performance and behaviour behind the wheel.