Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963992 | Print ISBN: 9781412906784 | Online ISBN: 9781412963992| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Philosophy of Education
Philosophy of education is the field of study that uses philosophical methods to study education. Textbooks and courses in philosophy of education may be organized around the branches of philosophy—for example, epistemology, ethics, political philosophy—or around centers of educational interest such as curriculum, pedagogy, or school structure. An organizational scheme that was popular fifty years ago—stressing broad philosophical schools of thought such as idealism, realism, and pragmatism—is rarely seen today. In its place, we see some works written from the perspective of critical theory, feminist philosophy, or postmodern philosophy. Philosophers of education in the United States today address questions of standards, accountability, equality, and testing as part of their analysis of school reform, but they also examine perennial issues such as the aims of education, democratic citizenship, and what constitutes the good life. Philosophy of education has a long history, and it is helpful to know something of that history ...