ERIC Number: ED196574
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Teachers' Autonomy and Scientific Training.
Teachers have far too little scientific training and knowledge to permit them to practice with autonomy. Consequently, teachers are restricted by the imposition of superfluous rules governing students' conduct, behavioral objectives, lesson plans, rigidly scheduled activities and testing programs. If educational practices were based on vast amounts of scientific research and theory, teachers would no longer operate on the bases of common sense and intuition. Arbitrary decisions by school administrators and the schools' vulnerability to political pressures would be reduced. Two questions of fundamental concern to educators are: (1) "How is knowledge acquired?" and (2) "How are moral values learned?" Piagetian constructivist approaches appear to be more adequate than behaviorist approaches to these issues. Teachers who understand children's construction of knowledge can be helped in their training to think about how to define objectives, how to conceptualize principles of teaching, when to suspend those principles, and how to evaluate an activity. Further, constructivist theory and practices can be used to assist children's acquisition of an autonomous morality. Well- prepared teachers in the future should have a firm scientific basis for understanding how children acquire knowledge and become responsible citizens. Otherwise, education will continue to be erratically influenced by changes in political pressures.
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Autonomy (Personal); Behaviorism; Piagetian Theory; Professional Autonomy
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (San Francisco, CA, November, 1980).