Course Description

Module 09: Appreciative Inquiry

Understandings: One of the basic premises of Positive Psychology is to ask the “right questions”. Research has shown us that what we consciously choose to focus on makes a big difference in the desired outcome. Appreciative Inquiry was the first managerial methods to refocus the attention on what works, the positive core, and on what people really care about within an organization and/or school.The WOOP (Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan) analysis is different from other personal goal-setting strategies and positive-thinking strategies because it focuses on mental contrasting and intentional action and/or behaviors. Appreciative Inquiry and WOOP allows participants to contrast their wishes with potential obstacles resulting in positive outcomes.

Essential Question: Why do we continuously do the same action within an organization or personally when the outcome remains the same? How do we shift the outcome towards more positivity? Why do we focus on deficiency model, predominantly asking questions that focus more on the problems and on what needs to be fixed?

Knowledge that you will develop in Module 9:
  • Define Appreciative Inquiry.
  • Understand the 4 steps of the WOOP goal setting analysis.
  • Learn how to ask the right questions.
  • Identify the 5 principals of Appreciative Inquiry.
  • Understand the 4D Process of Appreciative Inquiry.

Senior Instructors

Dr. Mary E. Sanders & Eric B. Hamilton

Dr. Mary E. Sanders and Eric B. Hamilton have combined their strengths to develop a unique, research-based program for schools, teachers, and students to increase wellbeing and happiness. To create our curriculum, we have curated the findings of Dr. Martin Seligman, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Dr. Angela Duckworth, Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky, Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD., among other leading positive psychology experts, into practical strategies that can be integrated into teachers’ personal lives, as well as their classrooms, enabling teachers and students to thrive.ERIC B. HAMILTONEric B. Hamilton is a veteran director for international schools around the world. Eric has spent his entire career enabling schools to be happier, more compassionate environments where both students and teachers thrive. His extensive experience in curriculum development and school leadership have enabled him and Mary to develop their courses using the most contemporary and research-based pedagogical methods.Eric has over 25 years experience in education as a teacher and leader. He attended the University of Delaware where he earned his B.S. in elementary education and middle school math. Later, he completed the master’s program at the University of Colorado in curriculum and instruction. He has been a dedicated practitioner of mindfulness, meditation, and yoga for the past 10 years.MARY E. SANDERSDr. Mary E. Sanders has been involved in the world of positive psychology, health, and wellness for more than 20 years. With certifications from the Wholebeing Institute in Positive Psychology and as a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) practitioner, she is highly qualified to lead teachers towards happier, more holistic classrooms.Dr. Sanders attended Eastern Illinois University and earned her B.S. in zoology and chemistry. She then attended Logan College of Chiropractic to earn her doctorate in chiropractic. Dr. Sanders is a certified yoga Instructor and has been a mindfulness, meditation, and yoga practitioner of over 25 years.

Course curriculum

  • 2

    Week 1: Science and Benefits of Appreciative Inquiry

    • The Science and Benefits of Appreciative Inquiry and WOOP

    • Dr. David Cooperrider: Appreciative Inquiry

    • Jackie Kelm: What is Appreciative Inquiry?

    • Dr. Gabriele Oettingen: Rethinking Positive Thinking

    • Discussion: Recall Your Best Work Experience

    • Quiz Week 1

  • 3

    Week 2: Personal Transformation of Appreciative Inquiry

    • Introduction to Personal Transformation

    • WOOP

    • Article: WOOP – Science’s #1 Tool For Habit Change and Goal Achievement

    • Personal WOOP Demonstration

    • Discussion: Reflect on a Personal WOOP Activity

    • Quiz Week 2

  • 4

    Week 3: Educational Trends in Appreciative Inquiry and WOOP

    • Introduction to Educational Trends

    • AoH in Education. Appreciative Inquiry AoH Lithuania

    • Discussion: School Improvement Efforts

    • First Step of the Appreciative Inquiry

    • Appreciative Inquiry Interview Questions for Teachers​​

    • Discussion: AI Interview With a Colleague

    • Quiz Week 3

  • 5

    Submit your final project (due the end of week 4)

    • Aviva Lesson Plan Description

    • Download the Aviva Lesson Plan Template here!

    • Upload your final project here!

  • 6

    Week 4: Classroom Activities for WOOP

    • Introduction to Classroom Activities

    • Implementing WOOP in Advisory

    • Discussion: 7 Steps to Implement WOOP in Your School

    • Character Lab: Goal Setting

    • Introduction to WOOP: A Goal Setting Experience

    • Woop Toolkit for Educators

    • Discussion: WOOP Activity in your Classroom

    • Quiz Week 4

    • Summary

  • 7

    Rate and Review this Course

    • Rate and Review Module 09

  • 8

    References and Research Articles

    • References and Research Articles used in Module 9