ERIC Number: ED216964
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1979
Reference Count: N/A
Philosophical Phenomenology: A Methodology for Holistic Educational Research. Multicultural Research Guides Series, Number Four.
Stone, Frank Andrews
This paper presents phenomenology as an alternative approach in conducting educational research. The aim of phenomenological research is the exploration of the fundamental consciousness of the person or people being studied so that their perceptions can be identified and interpreted. Today's phenomenology comes from the work of a group of European philosophers. The fathers of the movement are two Germans, Franz Brentano and Edmund Husserl. Other contributors to phenomenology are also discussed in the paper. Phenomenology is then contrasted with normative conceptual, analytic, and empirical research methodologies. The conventional methodology of interpreting the thought of some educational theorist or pedagogical movement by analyzing, categorizing, comparing, and contrasting concepts is based on a paradigmatic framework. According to this model, human beings react and respond to the world outside of themselves on the basis of identifiable shared mental structures. Phenomenological paradigms are based on a different rationale and function differently than do normative ones. Phenomenologists assert that every human being has a unique life of consciousness. The paper then describes the processes involved in doing phenomenological investigations. Two requirements are rigorous detachment on the part of the researcher and a focus on the pure consciousness of the informant not on observable behavior or recognizable conceptual modes. Methods for focusing on this pure consciousness are described. The article concludes with brief descriptions of four recent studies in which phenomenological methodology was used. (RM)
Descriptors: Educational Research, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Research Methodology
I.N. Thut World Education Center, Box U-32, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06268 ($1.50, plus $0.30 postage).
Publication Type: Guides - General; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Connecticut Univ., Storrs. Thut (I.N.) World Education Center.