Dr. Ed Cunliff

Dr. Ed Cunliff

Email: ecunliff@uco.edu

Phone: (405) 974-2972

Office: CTL 221

Box: 206


General Information

In my field of adult and higher education, I draw on many sources and those continue to expand and contract and morph. Four core sources for me are: adult learning theory, transformative learning, radical educational theory and Bloom’s taxonomy. From adult learning I take the idea that adults want to be involved, are motivated intrinsically, and bring great information and skills to the circle. Transformative learning says to me that learning is more than just gaining more knowledge and skill and that it involves an openness to change, to see and experience the world differently, to take the diversity that exists around us and to intentionally include pieces into who we are. The works of bell hooks, Paulo Freire and John Dewey are important as they remind me of the strong connection between educational process and democracy and social change. Bloom’s taxonomy describes my hope for learners to move beyond memorization to higher levels of synthesis and creativity in their thought processes. These are significant elements of my philosophy of education.

I am currently studying as much as I can in the neuroscience of learning, and I make a point of sharing what I learn with students and colleagues and others. This is an exciting area of study and I bring small pieces into my practice – currently in terms of intentionality, physical engagement and mindfulness. I strongly believe that this will reframe some of our educational practices in the future.

While I have many hopes for students (especially reaching their educational goals), I do hope that their work with me will support them as self-directed learners and as critical thinkers. Those two skills, I believe, will greatly help them in their educational and life journeys.

I have worked in social services, training offices and in higher education for most of my career. If you are interested in training or human resource management I would suggest you put some study into the Association for Talent Development’s competency model at:


Those interested in student personnel, student affairs or enrollment management might want to look at:


I try to align with these national associations as a means of providing you with more options in your career paths.

Professional Associations

Research Interests

Special Activities and Awards


Over 50 publications in professional journals, booklets and a book chapter.