ERIC Number: ED458706
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Jan
Paradigmatic Differences in Educational Administration: Positivism and Critical Theory.
In the literature on sociobehavioral theory and educational administration, theorists are offering other methodologies as replacements for empiricism or positivism. Other paradigms, such as critical theory, and other methodologies are used. Sometimes these are combined with the empirical method. Research focusing on how people interact in the world is termed sociobehavioral theory, and the research on how people react in a patterned manner is termed organizational theory. Research on the behavior of school administrators is used to construct educational administration theory and is linked through methodology to the philosophic assumptions of a paradigmatic position. Positivism--the traditional paradigm of educational administration--assumes a reality that is objective and that can be fully measured and described. In the 1960s, the social sciences considered other approaches, such as critical theory, which examines the differences between ideas and reality, historical context, the claims of conceptual principles, subjective responses, and political and ethical concerns by using research methods that are more qualitative than statistical. This nonpositivistic view is no longer viewed as novel or radical. No view of reality should be excluded from the field of educational administration. A multiparadigmatic approach may yield more insight than any one viewpoint can offer. (Contains 63 references.) (RKJ)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A