ERIC Number: ED228195
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Dec
Education: The Overcoming of Experience.
Buchmann, Margret; Schwille, John
The presuppositions that favor firsthand experience over secondhand information, as pertaining to learning and education, are questioned. It is noted that, when education and firsthand experience are described as if equivalent, a presumption is made that a commonsense theory of knowledge and mind is valid. Research on the social psychology of judgment is used to identify faulty inferences that frequently result from learning by firsthand experience. These pitfalls are illustrated in a discussion of learning to teach. In considering how firsthand experience can close avenues to conceptual and social change, it is pointed out that firsthand experience often fallaciously confounds whatever happens in life with necessity. The example is given of vocational education, in which learning by doing is advocated as a means of fitting students into the real world, thereby curbing their aspirations. It is argued that ideas based on secondhand information are more likely than firsthand experience to manifest both the real and the possible, and it is concluded that education gives access to thoughts and theories that are beyond the scope of firsthand experience. (JD)
Descriptors: Concept Formation, Discrimination Learning, Elementary Secondary Education, Experiential Learning, Generalization, Learning Experience, Learning Processes, Metacognition, Perceptual Motor Learning, Vocational Education
Institute for Research on Teaching, Michigan State University, 252 Erickson Hall, East Lansing, MI 48824 ($3.25).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Michigan State Univ., East Lansing. Inst. for Research on Teaching.