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Wright Integrative Approach


Academics: The Wright Curricular Model

Wright Graduate University utilizes a learning model based on principles of adult learning and designed to accommodate the needs, requirements and learning styles of midlife and mid-career professionals.

Programs at WGU combine theory with practice in a learning model that emphasizes academic understanding, research and writing skills, performative learning and application.

The academic model used at WGU is offered through the completion of a variety of learning activities, including:

  • Participation in weekly discussion forums on our online learning platform and responding to the submissions of faculty and peers.
  • Participation in weekend learning sessions. Monthly weekend learning sessions occur monthly at the Elkhorn campus in Wisconsin. at our Elkhorn, Wisconsin, campus. Students participate real-time, either in residence on campus or online. Synchronous (real-time) participation is required for at least one weekend learning session per quarter in order to pass the class. See full description and requirements for weekend learning sessions here
  • Completion of research, reports, assignments, and quizzes, online or in-person.
  • Participation in the weekly two-hour performative learning training sessions, held every Tuesday from 6:00-8:00 pm (in applicable courses).
  • Completion of biweekly, half-hour mentoring sessions with a faculty member or doctoral student (in applicable courses).
  • Completion of 45-minute, biweekly coaching sessions (in applicable courses).
  • Submission of weekly online assignments.


Wright Integrative: A Trans-Disciplinary Approach

Every course you take has three elements: an overview of the field, an applied project, and a performative report. You not only learn with each course, but you also grow. You acquire professional skills as well as develop personally. 

The overview of the field includes all six core disciplines of the Wright Integrative approach to help you relate diverse fields in your pursuit of a great career and life. Wright Integrative’s conceptual framework includes the fields of study you see in the diagram below. These six disciplines provide a firm foundation for you to

continue to develop professionally and personally throughout the program as well as the rest of your life.Wright Graduate University utilizes a learning model based on principles of adult learning and designed to accommodate the needs, requirements and learning styles of midlife and mid-career professionals. 


The Six Core Disciplines of Wright Integrative



Wright Integrative Model Diagram


Developmental Theory and Practice

Developmental theory as represented by the work of Sigmund Freud, Erik Erikson, and others cover the ongoing social, emotional, and cognitive development of human beings throughout their lives; the stages of development; how early childhood affects beliefs and behaviors; identity formation; the psychological processes of projection and transference; and the dynamics of self-development and awareness.

Adlerian Psychology

Alfred Adler, a contemporary of Freud, established the role of social relationships in determining both our beliefs and actions. Elements of Adlerian theory include the universal force; personal power and mastery; the importance of birth order; how beliefs are developed in relation to the family of origin; the role of social interests and meaning; and the nature of the overall systematic nature of what Adler called “individual life style.”

Human Potential Theory and Practice

Humanistic psychology began in the 1950s with Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers (among others) and replaced the pathological model with the concept that human potential is far beyond current performance. Included in this component are the fields of positive psychology, existential theory, systems theory and other areas of study that relate to human potential.

Theory, practice, and research in this area also include inquiry into what really brings fulfillment; how human beings can empower each other; and how limiting beliefs can be challenged and reformulated.

Existential Theory and Practice

This component includes the thinking of both existential philosophers and psychologists such as Jean-Paul Sartre, Søren Kierkegaard, Martin Heidegger, Paul Tillich, and Rollo May. Existential concepts core to transformational leadership and coaching include authenticity; being in the here-and-now; choice; meaning and purpose; and principled leadership and living.

Educational Theory and Practice

This refers to the theories and methodology related to how people learn, change, and transform. Theorists such as Dewey, Vygotsky, and Mezirow identify the core elements that need to be included in any transformational technology.

Neuroscience and Research

Recent technological and diagnostic advances in neuroscience and related research have resulted in new understanding of the how the brain processes and stores information and emotions; the relationship between cognition and emotions; the mediating role of the temporal lobe; and much more. Neuroscientific, behavioral, and other research can be used as never before to effect personal transformation.


Wright Graduate University is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a 501(c)3 non-profit located in Chicago, IL.

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“I now feel more established and credible as a coach and I bring more to the table because I’m living what I’m learning in my own life as well.” read Gertrude's story here 

“Before starting at WGU, I had avoided school and taking tests for years. But Wright’s Performative Model has been teaching me how much I love learning and how skilled I actually am.” read John's story here