Essentialism

William Bagley

Essentialist believe that there exist a critical core of information and skill that an educated person must have. The two origins of essentialism is from idealism and realism. .Philosophy    Essentialism is a uniquely American philosophy of education which began in the 1930’s and 1940’s as a reaction to what was seen as a overemphasis on a childcentered approach to education and a concern that students were not gaining appropriate knowledge in schools.

.Philosopher  William Bagley introduced the philosophy of essentialism in education in the 1930’s. Then essentialism was criticized as being too rigid to prepare students adequately for adult life.

Purpose of Schooling   Prepare students to be productive. contributing members of society. . the aim of education is to teach the young the essentials they need to live well in the modern world. For essentialist.

Maintains task-oriented focus.Teacher’s Role    Teacher is expert of content knowledge. . Teaches essential knowledge.

. proven instructional methods.Teaching Strategies  Avoids methodological frills and soft pedagogy and concentrates on sound.

Curriculum  Strong emphasis on basic skills in elementary schools and on disciplined knowledge and scholastic achievement in secondary schools .

.Student’s Role  Is there to listen and learn.

.Metaphysics  What is relevant is what helps an individual live well and what benefits humanity.

Epistemology    Truth exists in the classics and modern science. Students must learn process and content. . Knowledge is gained through the interaction of experiences and rational thought.

Values exist in the best of culture. .Axiology   Determined by the natural order of things.

.Logic  Rationality is best developed through interplay of deductive and inductive thinking.

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