Defined by many and understood wholly in practice, Inquiry Learning (IL) has grown as an extension from constructivist philosophy in which learning is made authentic by providing choices, perspectives and tools in which information is placed on a conveyor belt of ongoing reflection. Two key constructivist theorists who have significant influence on Inquiry Learning are Jean Piaget and Vygotsky.
IL is a process of understanding and discovering new concepts and information paralleled with prior constructs. Learners bring their unique life experiences and personal perspectives to the development of understanding new information. IL is a collaborative process between learner and teacher to extract the whole potential of learning experiences in a relevant and meaningful way based on students’ personal perspectives, life experiences and natural curiosities. The teacher is vital in successful implementation. The teacher encourages varied perspectives, articulates (including explicit instruction at times), organises and provides feedback (Reynolds, 2012) – tools for using and analysing information, thinking critically,forming ideas and creating things from information. In this way learning empowers students and is authentic- to establish underlying values of learning as an intrinsic life long process of inquiry in finding knowledge about the world.