​©2015 Tracy Maxwell

A Single Cell blog

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April 1, 2015

In higher education where I have spent 20+ years of my career, there is a theory by which we work with students that is affectionately known as “challenge and support.” Developed in the 1960s by Nevitt Sanford, this theory postulates that too much challenge will lead to frustration and too much support will prevent growth and development. He suggested that there is a sweet spot in the middle that provides the maximum potential for learning. I wrote about this theory in my blog and book in describing First Descent’s programs. I believe they have the sweet spot down cold. 


I once told a friend of mine that she was one of my most “challenging” friends. She got upset. At first, I was surprised because I meant it as a compliment, but when I tried to see it from her perspective, I can understand...

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