School of Education


Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)


James Swezey


Classical, Trivium, Transcendental, Phenomenology, Qualitative, Experience


Education | Educational Methods


The purpose of this phenomenological study is to describe the lived experiences of students who graduated from modern classical Christian schools. The theoretical framework utilized is Bandura’s Social Learning Theory (SLT) as it relates to his concept of academic self-efficacy (ASE). Bandura (1986) posited that there are four constructs that serve as predictors in the development of ASE: mastery experiences, vicarious experiences, social persuasion, and physiological response. To address the research problem, I identified a purposive criteria sampling of 8 participants who graduated from accredited and member ACCS schools having experienced all three components of the trivium. Of the eight participants, five maintained a journal entering qualitative responses that described their respective ACCS school experience. All eight participants were interviewed using semi-structured, open-ended questions that allowed for follow-up discussion and elaboration. Finally, I facilitated a focus group interview with four of the eight participants, which was guided by semi-structured questions designed to elicit discussion on the emerging themes from the interviews and journals. The data was analyzed using Moustakas’ (1994) seven step model of transcendental phenomenology. The research resulted in a Kingdom-oriented, composite, metaphorical description of student experiences in trivium-based education within ACCS schools.