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1 INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHICAL, PSYCHOLOGICAL AND SOCIOLOGICAL BASES OF EDUCATION

INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHICAL, PSYCHOLOGICAL AND SOCIOLOGICAL BASES OF EDUCATION

-Satish Kumar

-Sonia Gulati

-Sajjad Ahmad

 

Audio

Bases are the pillars upon which the building lies. The building of Education also has several bases. The current chapter however, discusses the three main bases of education namely the philosophical base, the psychological base and the sociological base. By going through the chapter you will be able

·         To understand the meaning of philosophical, psychological and sociological bases of education.

·         To relate these branches to different mode of life.

·       To interrelate philosophy, psychology and sociology to education and its different components.

·         To develop analytical thinking by relating different disciplines to educations.

PHILOSOPHICAL BASES OF EDUCATION

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Since the inception of this world man has been constantly trying to know the truth. This “knowing” is philosophy. It is philosophy, which has interpreted man and his activity in general. Human life cannot properly be understood without philosophy. There is close relationship between philosophy and life. Conception of life originates from philosophy. Philosophy gives self-consciousness and develops a spirit of enquiry after truth. Life and education are inseparably connected. One cannot be separated from the other. Hence life has a philosophical base and so education also has a philosophical base.

Meaning and Nature of Philosophy

         Etymologically, the word Philosophy has been derived from two Greek words “Philo” (love) and “Sophia” (wisdom) means love of wisdom. Wisdom is not the same thing as knowledge. Knowledge can be acquired, but wisdom is realized truth. Philosophy is love for the truth and a life’s necessity. Education in the widest sense of the term is life itself and, in a narrow sense it is the preparation for complete living. Philosophy provides a consistent and comprehensive interpretation of life and defines its goals. It helps us to understand the significance of all human experience and activity. It explores the base and aims of life. It is a logical enquiry into the nature of reality. Philosophy tries to answer the deepest question of life. It clarifies life and its base values. Philosophy means points of  view concerning purposes and values according to which man tries to live. With the help of philosophy man can understand himself and his relation to the rest of the universe, his origin and his destiny. Philosophy means attitude to life without which man cannot live. Philosophy indicates a certain way of life. Philosophy is an attempt to explain and appreciate life and the universe as a whole. According to Dewey, philosophy signifies “a wisdom that would influence the conduct of life”. According to Raymont, “philosophy is an unceasing effort to discern the general truth that lies behind the particular facts.” All these philosophers had their own philosophies, beliefs and values. Thus beliefs, values and ideals mould and direct human activity. Education is nothing but human effort and activity. Philosophy, therefore, is inseparable from education.

Meaning and Nature of Education

         Education is the process of development of the child or the individual. It is a life-long process. Education tries to develop the innate potentialities of the individual in a  harmonious manner. Education is harmonious development of all the powers of the human being i.e. physical, social, intellectual, aesthetic and spiritual. Thus, education is intimately connected with the life and experience of an individual. Hence education, life and philosophy are closely interrelated. There are no antitheses between philosophy of life and philosophy of education. They practically sail in the same boat.

Interrelation between Education and Philosophy

         Philosophy is the mother of education and education gives birth to Philosophy. This may seem contradictory but the relationship between philosophy and education is very close. Philosophy furnishes the goals of life and education gives the means to achieve those goals. Man is the common subject of both philosophy and education. Philosophy and education are interrelated, interdependent, identical and inseparable from each other. Every philosopher has an educational outlook and every educator has a philosophy of life. No system of education is completely divorced from philosophy. Philosophy provides the aim of life and thereby the aim of education, and education provides the vehicle for carrying out that philosophic aim in practical life. According to James Ross,  “Philosophy and Education are two sides of a coin: the former is contemplative while the latter is the active side,” Philosophy is thus an exhaustive and comprehensive inquiry into the world of matter and mind viewed as one whole. John Dewey defines philosophy as a theory of education in its most general aspects. He holds that “education  is the laboratory in which philosophic truth become concrete and are tested.”

         The interdependence of philosophy and education is evident from the fact that all great philosophers are great educators- Socrates in Greece, Confucius in China, Buddha, Tagore and Gandhi in India. They reflected their philosophical views in their educational schemes. For example, Plato’s idealism gave birth to his cultural scheme of education, Rationalism in philosophy produced the theory of formal discipline in education, Rousseau’s anti-social philosophy was reflected in his “negative or natural education”. American pragmatism has resulted in the project method of education. Naturalism has introduced the play-way method. Hence there is no reason to believe that education is unaffected by philosophy. The truths and principle established by philosophy are applied in the conduct of education process. Rousseau, Fichte and others, therefore contend that in the true sense of the term education is real philosophy. All educational programmes become consistent if their foundations are laid on sound philosophy. Philosophy formulates the aims of life and education offers suggestion how these aims are to be achieved. Education is a sustaining, progressive and purposive effort, whose strength comes only form the moral values of the community, the only source of which is philosophy.

         Therefore, we can say that without philosophy, education would be nothing but a blind effort and without education philosophy would be no better than a cripple. Divorced from philosophy, education would become an aimless endeavor; a hopeless waste of time and energy. Thus, philosophy gives education its point, its target, its goal.

          Philosophy exercises tremendous influence on education in all its aspects—aims, curriculum, methods, teachers, textbooks, administration, discipline, evaluation etc. There is no aspect of education, which is not influenced and determined by philosophy. There is no escape from a philosophy of life and of education. It determines the aims and content of education; it influences discipline in the school; it exercises an effective influence on the methods of teaching and it defines the role of the teacher in the educational set-up.

Philosophy and Aims of Education

            Every scheme of education has some aims to be attained. Aims differ from time to time and place to place. But aims have a common element. Aims of education are determined by aim of life or philosophy of life. Philosophy formulates the ends of life, and education offers suggestions how these ends are to be achieved. Aims of education change with the changing philosophy of life. The aim of Spartan system of education was to prepare patriotic citizens and soldiers. The Athenian system of education aimed at the cultural development of each individual. The British Public Schools aimed at citizenship. The Nazi system of education was determined by Nazi philosophy of life. Thus, aims of education are relative to the aims and philosophy of life.

Philosophy and Curriculum

         Philosophy determines the aims of education and curriculum determines how these aims can be attained. The curriculum is the means to attain aims of education. Curriculum  is to be determined by the educational objectives which are again determined by philosophy. Hence, the curriculum to be followed in schools has to conform to the prevailing philosophy. Thus, the problem of curriculum construction is tackled and solved by philosophical beliefs.

Philosophy and Text Books

         The text books constitute the part of curriculum. The adoption of appropriate text-books is, therefore, closely connected with philosophy. Briggs has rightly pointed out that the selection of text books depends on the ideals and values of a particular time and society. Philosophy is reflected in the content material of text-books.

Philosophy and Methods of Teaching

            Method means the art of teaching or the knowledge to which the teacher follows in the communication of knowledge to the students. The effectiveness of this teaching-learning process depends to great extent on the nature or art of communication. This art of communication or the classroom techniques are satisfactorily tackled by philosophy.

         Naturalist philosophy has emphasized the child-centered methods of education. It requires the methodology to recognize the inborn capacities of children. Educators like Rousseau, Fichte and Montessori stand for non-intervention by the teacher. The idealist philosophy, on the other hand, pleads for intervention in the education of the child by the teacher. Idealism argues that as the child has to realize certain ultimate values , the method of teaching must be teacher-centered. Pragmatism lays stress on problematic and creative activities and it advocates project method for effective learning.

Philosophy and Discipline

            The nature or type of discipline is always determined by the philosophy. Naturalism emphasizes self-assertion of the individual, as against blind obedience to authority. The idealists, on the other hand, wish the individual to rise above self. Idealism relies much on the personality of the teacher for the maintenance of discipline. Pragmatists advocate complete freedom from external pressure. Thus, we see that the problem of discipline is closely related with philosophy, and the conception of discipline as held by a teacher or educator will always be influenced by his philosophical beliefs.

Philosophy and Teacher

         The teacher is the soul of the educative process. A teacher not only has a thorough knowledge of his subject, but also he must know man, the society at large. He must have a clear vision about everything he comes into contact. Plato has defined philosopher as “One who has a taste for every sort of knowledge, one who is curious to learn and is never satisfied.” A teacher needs to study philosophy as a person and as a teacher. It helps him to keep manifold relations with his pupil.

            A teacher must have a definite outlook on life, optimistic or pessimistic, positive or negative, materialistic or idealistic. Any one of these beliefs will affect the various problems of education – the aims, the discipline, the curricula, the methods, the technique of teaching and the organization. So a teacher must have an adequate and sound philosophy. He must have a thorough grounding in philosophy.

Philosophy and Educational Administration

            Educational administration is also not untouched by philosophical doctrine. Mental tests and personality tests, which occupy a very prominent place in the field of educational administration, also require a definite philosophy.

Philosophy and Evaluation

         Evaluation is the continuous process of measuring the educational achievements in the light of educational aims already determined. Educational aims are determined by philosophy of life. Hence the first step of evaluation is the clear knowledge of educational aims.

         Thus, we find that philosophy affects both the theoretical and practical aspects of education.

One cannot be separated from the other. For individual and social development first of all we must have clear and definite educational objectives. Philosophy helps to solve the problem.  We are in urgent need of a comprehensive philosophy of education, without it a teacher cannot work creatively and efficiently.

SOCIOLOGICAL BASES OF EDUCATION

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Education takes place in society constituted of individuals. It is a social process. It has a social function as well as social relevance. A school is created by the society and the society is shaped and moulded by the school. Thus, education is both a cause and product of society. It originates in the society and it must fulfill the needs and aspirations of the society. There is thus an intimate relationship between education and society. Modern education has two-fold functions. It must help in individual development as well as social progress. An individual can only develop in the right direction in social environment. Education helps to solve the multifarious social problems.

Meaning and Nature of Sociology

         Sociology has come from two words Societas and Logos meaning “society” and “science” respectively. Hence scientific study of society is commonly known as sociology. Society is more than a mere assemblage of individuals. It involves interaction and interrelation between individuals and groups. In fact, society exists only in the articulate consciousness of human beings. On the other hand, the individual depends upon the society for his existence and self-development. It is society that acts as the selective agent and determines which of the possibilities will be allowed to develop through interaction with social groups and situations the original tendencies are modified, coordinated and shaped into individual is influenced by social direction. Sociology aims at explaining the inter-personal and group relationships. It explains occupational, religious or social groups, the nation or the state. It studies various social changes that are taking place within group life and analyses such processes of interaction as competition, Conflict, co-operation, accommodation and assimilation. It examines social change and social control, analyses the concepts of civilization and culture and deals with such social problems as crime juvenile delinquency, poverty and other social evils with a view to their solution.

Meaning and Definition of Educational Sociology

         Emile Durkheim, the French sociologist, for the first time felt the need of sociological approach to Education. He considered education  “to be something essentially social in character, in its origin and its functions.” He emphasized that education is not a static phenomenon but a dynamic and ever-changing process. Every society with its own changing socio-cultural needs will require an education to meet those needs. Since needs, change continuously therefore education must also change. The needs of different societies differ therefore education should be dynamic.

         Educational sociology is a branch of sociology, which is confronted with the problems of relationship between society and education. It makes an effort to achieve the aims of sociology through educational process, which is nothing but an interaction between the individual and the society. The knowledge of social interaction is one of the most important elements for social progress. Thus the development of the individuality is dependent on the reaction of the individual to his social environment.  Hence we can say “By educational sociology we mean the science which describes and explains institutions, social groups and social processes, and social relationships in which or through which the individual gains and organizes his experiences.”

         According to Brown, Educational Sociology is the study of interaction of the individual and his cultural environment. Thus social interaction is the key area of educational sociology. The individual becomes a person as a product of this interaction. Educational Sociology is particularly interested in finding out how to manipulate the educational process for better personality development.”

         John Dewey emphasized the importance of the socialization of the individual for education. He considered that through the participation of the individual in social process the complete development of education takes place. The educational process is nothing but a social process. The school is a social institution, which purifies the society, progress it and makes the individual conversant with the society.

         Thus, Educational Sociology is the study of those phases of sociology that are of significance for educative processes. Education sociology treats the school problems as of greatest importance to the nation. They are the problems of society and all social institutions, social direction, individual motivation and of effective group-actions. Educational sociology analyses and evaluates the groups and institutions in which learning takes place and the social process involved in learning and teaching. It analyses and evaluates the social trends and ideologies, which affect education. It helps us to understand that education is a means of social change. It throws light on human interaction and relationships within the school and the community. It emphasizes that learning is a social process. It is the total cultural milieu in which and through which the learning experience is acquired and organized.

Scope of Educational Sociology

         The scope of education sociology is very vast. It takes into account the various social forces and agencies like the school, the home, the religious organization, the play groups, It also studies the different processes of social interaction such as conflict, co-operation, competition etc. It also induces such topics as the role of the press, the T.V., the radio and the cinema as aids to social interaction. The other themes include social change and social control. It deals with the impact of sociology on the aims of education, the curricula, the school organization and the mythology of teaching. However, for the central personality development of the learner some specific social problems are also included in the scope of educational sociology. These are: the importance of teacher in the society, the relationship between the teacher and the taught, the behaviour of a student in a group, the influence of social life on the school, the teacher and the student, the relationship between the school and other social agencies, the relationship between the society and the curriculum.

Impact of Educational Sociology on Education

            Educational sociology plays a vital role on the modern educational theories and practices the aims of education, the principles of curriculum construction, the methods of teaching, the school organization and administration.

Meaning of Education

            Education is not mere schooling or instruction imposed by the elders on the younger ones. It is equivalent to the development of character or personality by means of the social life of education institutions. The social life includes all kinds of out-of-class activities. Man acquires experience throughout his life. This acquisition of experience is education. This process of acquiring experience is a social process and it is related to and influenced by social factors. Education is thus a social process and its function is not only to preserve the social heritage but also to enrich it. Learning is the result of social interaction and social motivation. Education helps to develop this social self so that an individual may become an effective and useful member of the society. Education is a process of directed learning. Education sociology focuses upon the social forces through which the individual gains experience.

Aims of Education

            Education sociology has its indirect impact on the aims and objectives of education. Educational sociologists think that education is a social process and it should be directed to social welfare. With this view the determination of the objectives of education is highly needed. The sociologists attach equal importance to the individual and social aspects of education.

            The aim of modern education is individual development as well as social advancement. Education enables an individual to make his life better both as an individual and as a member of his society. Education now emphasizes total development of an individual. This total development includes intellectual, social, moral, aesthetic, cultural, physical development. Education should bring about a change not only in the amount of knowledge gained but in abilities to do, to acquire habits, skills, interests and attitudes which characterize a person who is society accepted, personally well-adjusted and socially responsible. Thus, educational sociology emphasizes the social aims of education.

Functions of Education

            According to Payne, from the point of view of educational sociology the functions of education are mainly three (a) transmission of social and cultural heritage, (b) development of new social patterns, and (c) creative and constructive role.

            Education is to help in transmitting the cultural heritage with the help of such agencies as the school, the home, the religious organization, the radio, the T. V., the cinema, the press and the playgroup. But education is not only to transmit the past cultural heritage but also to develop new social patterns in such areas as health, leisure, vocation, home-life etc. Thus from the sociological point of view, education be regarded as a conservative force, a creative force and a critical force.

Curriculum Construction

            The impact of educational sociology on the principles of curriculum construction cannot be ignored. In ancient age the child was regarded as an adult. The adults used to frame the curriculum and imposed it on the young learners. This curriculum was obviously the brainchild of the adults. The child, his interests and inclinations were not taken into consideration. But in the modern age all these traditional views of curriculum construction have been totally rejected as unscientific. The curriculum is now in conformity with the general aims of education and it must help in the total development of the child. In the modern sense the curriculum is not mere a bundle of subjects but includes all types of activities in the school, which provide diverse experiences to the child. It is now the sum total of the experiences gathered by the child through social interactions in the school. Modern curriculum thus emphasizes the social need of education.

Activity Principle in Education

            Nothing can be taught, everything is to be learnt is the main idea of present-day education. The children are no longer passive recipients of knowledge they are now active participants in the learning process. This means that every useful productive work has learning value. Thus work-based education helps in the social development of the child. It prepares an individual to face the social reality. It helps in the process of socialization of the child and bringing social cohesion and solidarity.

The School

            In modern education the school is regarded as a society in miniature. The students learn through constant social interactions in the school. John Dewey says:  “School is a purified, simplified and better balanced society.” The school is an effective vehicle for socialization of the child. Thus schools are an important social agency or institution, which performs various social functions and responsibilities.

The School Organization and Management

            The school administration has now been democratized. The students are now allowed to participate in school administration and shoulder various administrative responsibilities. The school self-government is now an accepted educational principle and practice. This is no doubt the result of sociological principle in education.

The Teacher

            In modern education the teacher is regarded as a friend, philosopher and guide. He must prepare himself for this noble work. To fulfill this responsibility the teacher must possess suitable personality.

 

Human Relations

            Education thinks that the work of education cannot be carried on properly without reference to human relations. Human relations are also developed among students in the school society. These human relations determine the course of education. For this purpose now sociometric technique is applied in education. With the help of sociometric technique the group dynamics in school can be ascertained.

Methods of Teaching

            The methods of teaching are also influenced by educational sociology. The teacher has to adopt some method or technique to establish relationship between the objectives and the materials of instruction. The educational sociologist, according to Payne, judges the effectiveness of teaching method and technique in the light of three principles:

·               The method of teaching is effective only in so far as the skills and knowledge acquired in the classroom are actually made by the individual in his adjustment to social situations.

·               The method of teaching must place primary emphasis on social behaviour outside the classroom.

·               The method of teaching must seek to utilize the social forces operative in the social life in order to develop capacity for social adjustment.

            Thus it is evident that every aspect of education such as aims, functions, materials of instructions, methods of teaching is greatly influenced by social factors. Modern education aims at total development. Here lies the need of sociological foundation of education.

PSYCHOLOGICAL BASES OF EDUCATION

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Psychology has greatly influenced the development of modern education. Basic connections and relationships between psychology and education are manifold. Educational theory and practice are conditioned by the nature of human behaviour.

Nature of Psychology

            The term psychology has been derived from two words “Psyche” meaning mind and “Logos” meaning science. Hence psychology is the science of mind. J.B. Wastson in the beginning of the 20th characterized psychology as the science of behaviour. Like other sciences psychology has two main branches- Experimental Psychology and Applied Psychology. The former tries to determine the course or tendencies of human behaviour; the latter intends to improve human life with the application of the scientific knowledge of the human behaviour.

Educational Psychology

            Educational Psychology has developed to study scientifically the behaviour of the students and to help the process of education. It is particular field applied psychology. It tries to study the educational behaviour of the child and applies the knowledge psychology in education. Judd has defined Educational Psychology as the science which describes and explains the changes that take place in individuals as they pass through various stages of development from birth to maturity. “Apparently Educational Psychology deals with various problems of learning and teaching. That is why Educational Psychology is known as “psychology of teaching and learning.”

            A large number of educationists and psychologists have contributed to the origin and development of educational psychology. Because of the impact of psychology it has attained the status of science. In the writings of Plato we find the elements of psychology. Roman educationist Quintillion emphasized the psychology of individual difference in education. Comenius laid emphasis on needs, aptitude and interests of the students in education. He also mentioned the principle of correlation. Rousseau, Pestalozzi, Herbart, Montessori, James, Pavlov, Thorndike, Skinner and others emphasized the use of psychological knowledge in education.

            The starting point in the process of education must be related to original tendency of the child. This stock of originality is conveniently classified as instinct, reflex action, emotion and intelligence. Original tendencies are adaptable and incomplete. These may be modified and improved in acquiring acceptable behaviour –responses through education. As the original tendencies are adaptive these can be channelised in more progressive and socially desirable form of behaviour. Variations in general intelligence is great. Psychology measures this general ability. Educational psychology discusses process of development of the students, process of learning, social adjustment of the students, Individuals differences in physical abilities and mental traits and powers, Interest and motivation of child and various problems associated with the mental health of the students.

            The function of educational psychology is to know the child and his educational process completely. It tries to determine the means of attaining the educational goals and objectives outlined by educational philosophy. It helps the teacher, the students as well as the parents.

Influence of Psychology on Modern Education

            Educational Psychology has influenced the modern educational theories and practices in various ways. Psychology deals with the total behaviour pattern of man. Educational behaviour has different facets or dimensions, as it is also a social behaviour. In order to make the educational process effective Psychology helps us greatly.

Influence of Psychology on the Theoretical Aspect of Education

·   The primary aim of education is the total development of the child. In the past the child occupied the pivotal position in the educational area. But now the child occupies the central position. Modern education is child-centric, that is why psychology studies the nature and behaviour of the child in different facets. Child centricism is the direct effect of psychology on education.

·   In modern education, the concept of school has undergone tremendous changes. The school is now regarded as the replica of the society. For bringing desirable and permanent changes in the child the school should be organized as a society. So the child should be educated in the social environment of the school. Thus in modern education the concept of school has greatly been influenced by the theory and practice of social psychology.

·   Another important theoretical aspect of modern education is the activity principle. This means that the child should learn through self- activity. According to the psychologists activity is the natural tendency of the child. His natural inclinations are expressed through his activity. Education can be meaningful if these inclinations are utilized for the purpose of education. This activity principle is based on the psychological theory.

·   In modern times the meaning of education has changed to a great extent. It is a life-long process from birth to maturity. Education is the process of acquiring experience throughout life. Growth brings changes in the behaviour pattern of the child. Changes take place through the adjustment to the environment in which the child lives. In the way of adjustment the child acquires new experiences and this process of acquiring experience is education. Thus this new meaning of education has psychological basis.

Influence of Psychology on the Practical Aspect of Education

·   All modern methods are psychological methods. Learning can be effective if the content of education is communicated through the senses. Children are sensitive as well as imaginative. Senses are the gateways of knowledge. Hence in presenting instructional materials the senses (audio-visual) should be maximum utilized. In psychology the training of the senses has greatly been emphasized.

·   Another characteristic feature of modern educational method is that content of instruction should be presented in continuous, sequenced and integrated way. Psychology emphasizes that for proper understanding this continuous, sequenced and integrated presentation of facts is needed. This is the contribution of psychology.

·   Each individual has his own innate potentialities. For his educational development each individual should be treated separately. This educational principle is the product of psychology.

·   All modern methods of teaching emphasize that the students should actively participate in the learning process. He should not be passive recipient of knowledge. Through different methods of teaching the students are made active. This activity principle of education is the contribution of psychology.

·   Psychology has also influenced the modern principle of curriculum construction. In the past, disciplinary value of a subject was the main criteria of selection of subjects for curriculum. But the modern psychologists have discarded the theory of formal discipline. They think that no subject is indispensable for curriculum construction for its unlimited disciplinary value.

·   All the principles of modern school organization and administration have directly been influenced by psychology. For example timetable is framed on the basis of fatigue index of the students. The modern concept of school discipline is also a psychological product. Psychology emphasizes the importance of freedom of the child in the maintenance of discipline in the school.

·   Modern educational science attaches importance to the proper analysis of maladjusted behaviour of the school children.

         From the above discussion it is evident that psychology has influenced education in different ways. In the field of determination of aims of education the impact of psychology is very meager. The educational aims have mainly been influenced by philosophy. But psychology chalks out the ways and means by which the educational aims can be attained. Thus the influence of psychology on the theoretical aspect of education is partial and limited. But its influence on the practical field of education is significant and total. 

 

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POINTS TO REMEMBER 

Philosophy has been derived from two Greek words “Philo” (love) and “Sophia” (wisdom) and means love of wisdom. 

Relation of philosophy and education: Philosophy and Aims of Education, Philosophy and Curriculum, Philosophy and Text Books, Philosophy and Methods of Teaching, Philosophy and Discipline Philosophy and Teacher, Philosophy and Educational Administration, Philosophy and Evaluation. 

Sociology impacts Meaning of Education, Aims of Education, Functions of Education, Curriculum Construction, Activity Principle in Education, The School, The School Organization and Management, The Teacher, Human Relations, Methods of Teaching. 

Influence of Psychology on the Theoretical Aspect of Education and Practical Aspect of Education. 


2 Lesson 2 MEANING, AIMS AND PROCESS OF EDUCATION

MEANING, AIMS AND PROCESS OF EDUCATION

-Satish Kumar

-Sajjad Ahmad

Audio

Generally speaking, ‘Education’ is utilized in three senses: Knowledge, Subject and a Process. When a person achieves degree up to certain level we do not call it education .As for example if a person has secured Masters degree then we utilize education it a very narrower sense and call that the person has achieved education up to Masters Level. In the second sense, education is utilized in a sense of discipline. As for example if a person had taken education as a paper or as a discipline during his study in any institution then we utilize education as a subject. In the third sense, education is utilized as a process. In fact when we talk of education, we talk in the third sense i.e. education as a process. Thus, we talk what is education as a process? What are their importances etc.? The following debate on education will discuss education in this sense and we will talk education as a process.

By going through the text you will be able

·         To know the meaning and concept of education

·         To define the narrower and wider meaning of education

·         To explain the analytical meaning of education 

·         To know the aims and scope of education

Etymological Meaning of Education

In English the term “Education” has been derived from two Latin words Educare (Educere) and Educatum. “Educare” means to train or mould. It again means to bring up or to lead out or to draw out, propulsion from inward to outward. The term “Educatum” denotes the act of teaching. It throws light on the principles and practice of teaching. The term Educare or Educere mainly indicates development of the latent faculties of the child. But child does not know these possibilities. It is the educator or the teacher who can know these and take appropriate methods to develop those powers.

In Hindi, the term “Siksha” has come from the Sanskrit word “Shash”. “Shash” means to discipline, to control, to order, to direct, to rule etc. Education in the traditional sense means controlling or disciplining the behaviour of an individual. In Sanskrit “Shiksha” is a particular branch of the Sutra literature, which has six branches –Shiksh, Chhanda, Byakarana, Nirukta, Jyotisha and Kalpa. The Sutra literature was designed to learn the Vedas. Siksha denotes rules of pronunciation. There is another term in Sanskrit, which throws light on the nature of education. It is “Vidya” which means knowledge. The term “Vidya” has originated from “Bid” meaning knowledge.

If we mention certain definitions of education of great educators of the East and the West, we may have a clear picture of the nature and meaning of the term education.

·         Education is the manifestation of perfection already in man. Like fire in a piece of flint, knowledge exists in the mind. Suggestion is the friction; which brings it out.

Swami Vivekananda

·         By education I mean an all-round drawing out of the best in child and man’s body, mind and spirit.

Mahatma Gandhi

·         The highest education is that which does not merely give us information but makes our life in harmony with all existence.

Rabindranath Tagore

·         Education is something, which makes a man self-reliant and self-less.

Rigveda

·         Education is that whose end product is salvation.

Upanishada

·         Education according to Indian tradition is not merely a means of earning a living; nor it is only a nursery of thought or a school for citizenship. It is initiation into the life of spirit and training of human souls in the pursuit of truth and the practice of virtue.

Radhakrishnan

·         Education develops in the body and soul of the pupil all the beauty and all the perfection he is capable of.

Plato

·         Education is the creation of sound mind in a sound body. It develops man’s faculty specially his mind so that he may be able to enjoy the contemplation of supreme truth, goodness and beauty.

Aristotle

·         Education is the child’s development from within.

Rousseau

·         Education is enfoldment of what is already enfolded in the germ. It is the process through which the child makes the internal-external. 

Froebel

·         Education is the harmonious and progressive development of all the innate powers and faculties of man- physical, intellectual and moral.

Pestalozzi

·         Education is the development of good moral character.

J.F.Herbert

·         Education is not a preparation for life, rather it is the living. Education is the process of living through a continuous reconstruction of experiences. It is the development of all those capacities in the individual which will enable him to control his environment and fulfil his possibilities.

John Dewey

·         Education is the complete development of the individuality of the child so that he can make an original contribution to human life according to the best of his capacity.

T.P.Nunn

            From the above discussion it is now clear that since the times of Plato to the modern times of John Dewey and Gandhi, various educationists have defined education in various ways. Speaking frankly, the field of education is so vast and varied that to give a specific definition of education about which all educationists agree is very difficult. We see that some educationists have defined only one aspect of education whereas the others emphasize its other phases. The reason of this difference of opinions is that different educationsts, most of whom are philosophers, have different views about the aim of life. According to Idealists, the aim of life is spiritual development. As such, they regard education as a spiritual process, which aims at bringing together the soul and the creator leading to self-realization. Pragmatists think about education as a process of social progress. Because of this difference in the philosophy of life, different educationists define education differently. The fact is that the real concept of education is not related solely to any of the above-mentioned views. It is more than either of them. In a real sense, education is a sort of synthesis of all the above viewpoints. In this sense, education includes the individuals, the society, the environment, the social fabric and the prevailing traditions. Hence, the definition of education ought to be a very comprehensive and all-inclusive one.

True Definition of Education

            The different meanings and definitions of education as given above lead us to the conclusion that education should have a comprehensive definition. Thus, education may be defined as a purposive, conscious or unconscious, psychological, sociological, scientific and philosophical process, which brings about the development of the individual to the fullest extent and also the maximum development of society in such a way that both enjoy maximum happiness and prosperity. In Short, education is the development of individual according to his needs and demands of society, of which he is an integral part. The above remarks of different educators highlight the following special features of education:

·         Education is both unilateral as well as bi-polar in nature.

·         It is a continuous process.

·         It is knowledge or experience.

·         It is development of particular aspects of human personality or a harmonious integrated growth.

·         It is conducive for the good of the individual or the welfare of the society.

·         It is a liberal discipline or a vocational course.

·         It is stabilizer of social order, conservator of culture, an instrument of change and social reconstruction. 

Narrower and Broader Meaning of Education

Education in the Narrower Sense

In its narrow sense, school instruction is called education. In this process, the elders of society strive to attain predetermined aims during a specified time by providing pre-structured knowledge to children through set methods of teaching. The purpose is to achieve mental development of children entering school. To make of narrow meaning of education more clear, the following opinions of some other educationists are being given-

·               The culture which each generation purposefully gives to those who are to be its successors, in order to qualify them for at least keeping up, and if possible for raising the level of improvement which has been attained.

            John Stuart Mill

·               In narrow sense, education may be taken to mean any consciously directed effort to   develop and cultivate our powers.

S. S. Mackenzie

·               Education is a process in which and by which knowledge, character and behaviour of the young are shaped and moulded.

Prof. Drever

·               The influence of the environment of the individual with a view to producing a permanent change in his habits of behaviour, or thought and attitude.

G. H. Thompson

            Education, in the narrower sense, is regarded as equivalent to instruction. It consists of the “specific influences” consciously designed in a school or in a college or in an institution to bring in the development and growth of the child. The word school includes the whole machinery of education from Kindergarten to the University. The education of the child begins with his admission in the school and ends with his departure from the University. The amount of education received by the child is measured in terms of degrees and diplomas awarded to him. The school represents formal education as it imparts education directly and systematically. There is deliberate effort on the part of the educator to inculcate certain habits, skills, attitudes or influences in the learner, which are considered to be essential and useful to him. According to John Dewey: “The school exists to provide a special environment for the formative period of human life. School is a consciously designed institution, the sole concern of which is to educate the child. This special environment is essential to explain our complex society and civilization”.

            The influences or modes of influences in the school are deliberately planned, chosen and employed by the community for the welfare of the members of the rising generation. The purpose of these influences is to modify the behaviour of the child in such a way that he may become different from what he would have been without education. It makes possible a better adjustment of human nature to surroundings. According to Mackenzie, education, in the narrower sense, is conscious effort to develop and cultivate our innate powers.

 

            Education, in the narrow sense, is also regarded as acquisition of knowledge. According to it education is a process by which knowledge or information on a subject is acquired. But many sensible educationists have criticized this view. They argue that emphasis on the knowledge is likely to reduce all schools to mere knowledge-shops. The acquisition of knowledge is not the only or supreme aim of education, yet it is one of the important aims of education.

Education in the Broader Sense

         In its wider sense, education is the total development of the personality. In this sense. Education consists of all those experiences, which affect the individual from birth till death. Thus, education is that process by which an individual freely develops his self according to his nature in a free and uncontrolled environment. In this way, education is a life long process of growth environment.

·               In the wider sense, it is a process that goes on throughout life, and is promoted by almost every experience in life.

S. S. Mackenzie

·               By education, I mean the all-round drawing out of the best in child and man’s body, mind and soul.

M. K. Gandhi

·               Education in its widest sense includes all the influences, which at upon an individual during his passage from cradle to the grave.

Dumvile

·               Education, in its broadest sense, is the means of the social continuity.

 John Dewey

 

            Education in the wider sense is a life-long process. It begins with the birth of a child and ends with his death. It is a continuous process. Continuity is the law of life. Education is not limited to the classroom only; it is also not limited to a particular period of life. Education is a life long process and goes on from birth to death. Throughout life one goes on learning to adjust oneself to the changing patterns of life. Change it’s the fundamental law of human existence. Life is a continuous process of growth and development and so education is also a continuous process.

            An individual learns through his experiences, which are acquired throughout his life. Education is not merely collection of some information.  It is acquisition of experiences through life in the social and natural environment. It includes all the knowledge and experiences, acquired during infancy, childhood, boyhood, adolescence, youth, manhood or old age through any agency of education- the press, the travels, the club, the nature- formally and informally. Thus, education becomes the sum-total of all experiences that the child receives either in the school or outside. In this wider sense, life is education and education is life. Whatever broadens our horizon, deepens our insight, refines our reactions and stimulates thought and feeling, educates us.” In other words, education is the process whereby a human being gradually adopts himself in various ways to his physical, social, and spiritual environments. It is the development of all those capacities in the individual, which will enable him to control his environment and fulfill his possibilities. Education, in the broader sense, is transmission of life by the living, to the living, through living and for living”. Education is a means for the development of balanced all- round harmonious development of personality. Personality includes not only body and mind but also spirit.

Analytical Meaning of Education

         In the above discussion, we have thrown light on the etymological, narrow and wider meaning of education. In the following lines, we are trying to make the meaning of education. In the following lines, we are trying to make the meaning of education more clearly by explaining its constituent factors in greater details-

·               Not Limited to knowledge imparted in Schools- Education cannot be confined to the   processes of giving knowledge to children in schools only. Its programme goes on from birth till death. n other words, every one learns something or the other throughout life by various experiences and activities. All this is education.

·               Education as the Development of Child’s Innate Power- While explaining the etymological meaning of education we have made it clear that education is developing the native endowments of a child rather than something forced into the mind from outside.

·               Education as a Dynamic Process- Education is not static but a dynamic process, which develops the child according to changing situation and times.

·               Education as a Tripolar Process- John Dewey, regards education a process of development. According to John Dewey education has two aspects- (1) Psychological and (2) Sociological. He asserts that the development of a child does not take place in vacuum. It takes place in and through the society in which the teacher and the child both live. Thus, it is the society, which will determine the aims, contents and methods of teaching. In this way, the process of education contains three poles, namely- (1) The teacher, (2) The child, (3) The society. These three factors actively cooperate in the efficient and successful working of the educational process. 

True Meaning of Education

            We have discussed above the meaning of education in its narrow, wider and analytical sense, but none of them is the true meaning of education. In its narrow sense, education is a formal conservative process mainly confined to school campus. In its wider sense, education becomes a vague and informal process aiming at nothing but allowing the child uncontrolled freedom for arbitrary activities. Through such a process it is not possible to inculcate social, moral and spiritual values in children Thus, both the processes are one-sided and emphasize the two extremes. The real concept of education is a synthesis of these two processes. This synthesis will develop the child to the full according to his inherent tendencies with emphasis on concurrent development of society, of which he is an integral part. Such an education will develop both the child and the society to higher and higher positions of glory and cultural eminence.

 

 

AIMS OF EDUCATION

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Need of Aims of Education

            Education is a purposeful activity. By education we intend to bring certain desirable changes in the students. Education is a conscious effort and, as such, it has definite aims and objectives. In the light of these aims the curriculum is determined and the academic achievements of the student are measured. Education without aim is like a boat without its rudder. Aims give direction to activity. Absence of an aim in education makes it a blind alley. Every stage of human development had some aim of life. The aims of life determine aims of education. The aims of education have changed from age to age and thus it is dynamic because the aims of life are dynamic.

Nature of The Aims of Education

            In order to know the aims of education, we must know the nature of aims. Aims of education are not fixed, eternal and universal. These are changeable and relative. The nature of the aims of education can properly be understood in the light of two distinct philosophies of life-idealism and pragmatism. Idealism stands for absolute, ultimate, eternal and universal values. It advocates high ideals of life, which are mainly spiritual in nature. Idealism pleads “knowledge for knowledge’s sake.” In an idealist society, education is for the general and moral development of a person. According to idealism, the aims of education are spiritual and idealistic in nature and they are predetermined, absolute, unchangeable and universal. The aim of idealist education is to realize these pre-existing, absolute and universal values. It is “Education for complete living.”

            Pragmatism deals with life as it is and not as it should be. It is also known as the realistic approach to life. In realism the existing or prevailing social, political and economic conditions of life are taken into consideration. The existing conditions of life determine the aims of pragmatic education. Pragmatism does not believe in absolute and eternal values:  philosophy of life is always reflected in the aims of education. Plato considered that the guardians of the state should have high philosophical ideals. Locke emphasized “the disciplined and well-ordered mind.” Hegel stress on idealistic aim of education, i.e. glorification of the state and the fulfillment of the will of the absolute. Marx was a materialist. So he emphasized material aim of education, i.e., the practical economic needs of man. In a materialist society, educational aims are based on the materialistic outlook of the people. In such a society moral or spiritual values have nothing to do with education. The idealist society tries to glorify those values and emphasize moral upliftment of personality.

            The socio-political ideologies also determine the aims of education. A democratic government, a fascist government, a communist government- each one formulates its own ends and means of education. Democratic ideals of life are flexible and change with the changing conditions of life. Hence, in a democracy aim at the highest development of the innate potentialities of the individual. In fascism the individual exists for the state and education aims at glorification and welfare of the state. Man is regarded to be the creature of the state. Social and economic issues also serve as determinants of educational aims and objectives. Education must prepare the future generation for the economic and social system of the country. In determining its educational objectives, every country has to take into consideration its economic conditions. Thus we find, variability is the nature of educational aims. The Secondary Education Commission (1952) puts it: “As the political, social and economic conditions change and new problems arise, it becomes necessary to re-examine carefully and re-state clearly the objectives which education at definite stage should keep in view.”

Historical Evolution of Aims of Education

            In Ancient India the ideal of life was spiritualistic. Educational aim was determined by the conception of life. Thus the aim of education was self-realization or the realization of Brahma or the Absolute.

            In ancient Sparta education was not individualistic but socialistic. Each man was born not for himself, but for the state. The state itself was a school. The immediate aim of this state-controlled system of education was to train the youths in military barracks away from home, to develop a hardy mind in a hardy body, to produce courageous soldiers. Individual liberty was thus not allowed. Education was primarily physical.

            In Athens, the individual occupied the pivotal position in the education field. Athenian education aimed at harmonious development of personality physical, intellectual, moral and aesthetic. It secured harmony between the individual and the state, between physical and mental development, between thought and action. Its immediate aim was to develop a beautiful mind in a beautiful body. Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, the Greek idealists, discarded extremely individualistic aim of education. Socrates emphasized on the acquisition of universal and eternal knowledge or truth. Plato advocated harmonious development of all the powers of the individual and equated personal realization with social solidarity. Aristotle championed the ideal of harmony between the individual and the society, between intellect and character and theory and practice.

            The ancient Romans had no interest in the acquisition of purely theoretical knowledge. Their outlook was materialistic. Their highest aim of life was the attainment of material success. The aim of Roman education was, therefore, to produce a worthy citizen of the Roman state, able to enjoy the rights and perform the duties of a citizen.

            During the middle ages, education was wholly a priestly affair. Mysticism, monasticism, chivalry and scholasticism dominated life in every field. Education was absolutely formal in character and religious in outlook.

            With the passage of time this liberal humanistic education degenerated into an artificial and formal system. Against this artificial education the Realistic movement started under the leadership of Bacon and Comenius. According to them, ignorance was at the root of all evils. So they pleaded spread of universal and integrated knowledge. The child’s individuality, his powers and interests were given supreme importance. Due to religious, social, psychological and pedagogical reasons, a new theory of education, known as theory of mental or formal discipline came into vogue. John Locke was the historical representative of this new doctrine. According to him, the aim of education should be to produce a sound mind in a sound body. The aim of education would be to discipline all the faculties such as memory, imagination, perception, thinking etc.

            A true individualistic ideal of education came into existence in the 18th century. J.J. Rousseau revolted against the existing artificial and demoralized system of education. He not only championed the cause of the common people but also the cause of the child in the field of education. Thus naturalism appeared in education. Rousseau’s concept of negative education emphasized education according to nature. The child was regarded as the important and the central factor in the field of education. The aim of education should be therefore, spontaneous natural self-development of the child’s nature in close contact with nature. Kant was greatly influenced by the individualistic concept of education and defined education as the process by which man becomes man through his voluntary efforts.

            Pestalozzi introduced the psychological tendency in education and with it the child-centric movement in education received a new momentum and fillip. According to him, education was the process of the spontaneous unfolding of latent powers of the individual towards perfection. Herbart shouldered this task and he developed a systematic psychology of the methods of teaching. Froebel, the German idealist, regarded education as the spontaneous development of  a joyful, creative self-activity.

            From the above survey of the educational ideals it is evident that the aims and functions of education have been variously defined in different ages by different educators. Hence, we can conclude by saying that aims of education are not fixed and static but these are subject to constant change and dynamic.

DIFFERENT AIMS OF EDUCATION

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The Vocational Aim

            The vocational aim is also known as “the utilitarian aim or the bread and butter aim.” The above stated ideals of education are useless unless these aims enable us to procure the primary needs of our life- food, shelter and clothing. Education must help the child to earn his livelihood. Education, therefore, must prepare the child for some future profession or vacation or trade. The vocational aim is a narrow aim of education. Therefore, the vocational aim is not a complete aim by itself.

The Knowledge or Information Aim

            Educationists who hold the knowledge or information aim of education justify their stand with powerful arguments. They argue that knowledge is indispensable for all right action and it is the source of all power. “It is knowledge which makes a realist a visionary successful in any profession.

The Culture Aim

            The cultural aim of education has been suggested to supplement the narrow view of knowledge aim. The cultural aim of education is no doubt a nice aim as it produces men of culture. But it is ambiguous and has too many meanings. It cannot serve as the major aim of education.

The Character Formation Aim or the Moral Aim

            Character is the cream of life and, as such, it should be the aim of education. Vivekananda and Gandhi both emphasized character building in education. Character formation or moral education is concerned with the whole conduct of man. The Secondary Education Commission (1951-52) has rightly remarked: “character education has to be visualized not in a social vacuum but with reference to contemporary socio-economic and political situation.” Therefore, we can conclude that only character building cannot be the aim of education.

 

The Spiritual Aim

            The idealist thinkers have opined that the spiritual development of an individual should be the supreme aim of education. Mahatma Gandhi has attached great importance to spiritual vales in education.

The Adjustment Aim

            Adjustment is the primary rule of human life. Without adjustment to environment none can survive. Life is a struggle for adjustment. In the words of Horney: “Education should be man’s adjustment to his nature, to his fellows and to the ultimate nature of the cosmos.

The Leisure Aim

            “Free and unoccupied time” of an individual is generally known as leisure. It is a time when we can use it in a creative way. During leisure we can pursue an activity for own sake and not for earning a living, which is dull and monotonous. During leisure we can also regain our lost energy and enthusiasm. Leisure can make our life dynamic and charming.

The Citizenship Training Aim

            A citizen has to perform multifarious civic duties and responsibilities. Children should be so trained by education that they can successfully discharge their various civic duties and responsibilities. The Secondary Education Commission in India (1951-1952) has greatly emphasized citizenship training in schools. Such training includes the development of certain qualities to character such as clear thinking, clearness in speech and writing, art of community living, co-operation, toleration, sense of patriotism and sense of world citizenship. 

The Complete Living Aim

            Some educationists have insisted upon the need of an all-comprehensive aim of education. This viewpoint has led to the development of two aims- “the complete living aim” and the “harmonious development aim.” According to Horney “there is no one final aim, subordinating all lesser aims to itself… There is something in all these aims but not everything in any one of them.”

The Harmonious Development Aim

            Educationists are of the opinion that all the powers and capacities inherited by a child should be developed harmoniously and simultaneously. Gandhiji is a strong advocate of the harmonious development

The Social Aim

            From the above discussion it is clearly evident that no individual can live and grow without social context. Individual life became unbearable to man and that is why he formed society. Individual security and welfare depend on the society.  Individual improvement is conditioned by social progress. Education should make each individual socially efficient. A socially efficient individual is able to earn his livelihood. 

Aim of Education In India

            Educational aims in India should be judged in relation to the lives of the Indian people. Indian civilization is one of the ancient civilizations of the world.

Aims of Education in Ancient India

            The aim of education in ancient India was the ultimate outcome of the Indian theory of knowledge and the corresponding scheme of life and values. People in ancient India were greatly impressed and affected by the fact of death as the central fact of life. Their one aim of life was to solve the problem of death by achieving knowledge of the whole truth of which life and death are arts and phases. The aim was not simply abstract and theoretical. There were practical and concrete aims too. The first was the acquisition of knowledge. This was evident in the Vedic period. Inculcation of social and civic duties in the minds of the students was also regarded as an important aim of education in those days. Education for occupation was another important aim. Character training and moral education was regarded as very important aim of ancient Indian education.

Aims of Education in Medieval India

            During medieval age religion was the main guiding force in life and society. Medieval civilization centered round religion. The Muslim rulers of India generally took a keen interest in education, and many of them founded schools, colleges and libraries in various places in their kingdoms. The mosque was a center of instruction and of literary activity. Muslim education included those eternal teachings and values of the Quran and Haditha, which would promote moral and spiritual knowledge. Islamic education aimed at both physical and mental development of the students. Thus, it aimed at total development of personality of individual. 

Aims of Education in British India

            The British uprooted the indigenous system of education in India with definite intentions. The educational system established by the British was colonial in character. It was designed to prepare Indians only for taking certain subordinate positions in Government offices.  It was not intended to develop among the people capacities to take leadership and initiative in different walks of life. The main educational objective can better be understood from the following declaration in the educational policy or Lord Bentinck (1835): “We want a class of persons Indian in blood and colour but English in tastes in opinion, in morals and intellect.” The Wood’s Despatch declared almost the same policy. The aim of British education was to inculcate European knowledge in the minds of the Indians.

Aims of Education in Independent India

            After independence the Indian leaders realized the inherent defects in the system of education introduced by the British. Universalisation of education was the need of the hour. Education must be linked with national development in all directions. With these national goals in view the Government in independent India set up different committees and commissions for educational reforms in the desired lines. These committees and commissions have formulated educational aims and objectives. 

Indian University Commission

            Just after independence an education commission was set up to enquire into the various problems of education, particularly higher education, and to recommend proposals for its improvements. It is commonly known as Radhakrishnan Commission as Dr. Commission, 1948-49. This Commission has given many important recommendations regarding higher education. It has also formulated the aims of education of India.

Secondary Education Commission

            For reconstruction of Secondary Education, Secondary Education Commission was set up (1952-53) under the chairmanship of Dr. Lakshmanswami Mudaliar, a noted educationist and ex-Vice Chancellor of the Madras University. The Commission has made important recommendations for the reconstruction and development of secondary education in the country. The Commission formulated the following aims of Secondary Education after considering the dominant needs of India. These are, mainly, four:

1. Developing Democratic Citizenship

            The adoption of the goals of democracy and socialism necessitate the development of habits, attitude and qualities of character, which will enable its citizens to bear worthily the responsibilities of democratic citizenship. Among theses qualities, which are to be fostered through curricular and co-curricular activities in secondary schools, are:

·         The capacity for clear thinking (clearness in speech and writing);

·         The scientific attitude of mind;

·         Receptivity to new ideas;

·         Respect for the dignity and worth of every individual;

·         The ability to live harmoniously with one another

·         A sense of true patriotism; and

·         A sense of world citizenship.

2. Vocational Efficiency

            One of the urgent problems of the country was to improve productive efficiency and to increase the national wealth and thereby to raise the standard of living. In this respect the commission recommended fostering dignity of manual labour and promotion of work and technical skill for the advancement of industry and technology.

3. Development Personality or Character

             An important aim of democratic education is the all-round development of every individual’s personality. This requires that education should take into account all his needs- psychological, social, emotional, and practical and cater to all of them. It should provide in him the sources of creative energy so that he may be able to appreciate his cultural heritage, to cultivate rich interests, which he can pursue in his leisure, and contribute in later life to the development of this heritage. Hence, education should be so organized that subjects like life, art, craft, music, dancing and the development of creative hobbies should find place of honour in the curriculum.

4. Education for leadership

            Since the youth of today assume leadership in different walks of life tomorrow, special function of the secondary education is to train persons who will be able to assume the responsibility of leadership in social, political, industrial and cultural fields. To achieve success in this work, the qualities of justice, courage, discipline, tolerance, wisdom, sacrifice, initiative, understanding of social issues, civic as well as vocational efficiency should be developed in the young men and women of our country.

The Indian Education Commission on Educational Aims (1964-66)

            In July 1964 the Government of India set up an Education Commission to overhaul and reconstruct the entire field of Indian education under the chairmanship of Dr. D. S. Kothari. The Commission submitted its comprehensive report in July 1966. According to it education should aim at:

·         Increasing national productivity;

·         Achieving social and national integration;

·         Accelerating the process of modernization;

·         Cultivating social, moral and spiritual values.

National Policy of Education 1968

            The Government of India after considering the Report of the Education Commission tried to formulate a national policy of education. With this report Parliamentary Committee on education was set up in 1967. This Committee approved the recommendations of the Education Commission and formulated a national policy of education in 1968.

National Education Policy –1968- Challenge of Education Policy Perspective

            After seventeen years of experiment an attempt was made to evaluate the national education policy,1968. In 1985 the Government of India published and circulated a White Paper entitled  “Challenge of Education: Policy Perspective.”  On the basis of these opinions and the evaluation of different Government agencies, The Government of India declared its new education policy under the title “ National Policy on Education, 1986.”

PROCESS OF EDUCATION

Education by Accretion or Storage

            “According to this view, education is the process of gradually filling up the empty mind of the child with grains of knowledge. The teacher’s mind and the books are the store-houses of mental granary of the child. This is called the gold-sack theory. The books and the teacher are the sources of the springs of knowledge. From these sources the stream of knowledge is to be piped into the empty vassal of the child’s mind. This is humorously called the pipeline theory. Obviously education and knowledge is regarded as the ultimate educational aim.

            The supporters of the theory of education by accretion hold that knowledge is essential means of prompting human welfare. With the invention of the conventional symbols of language, it was easy to record, pressure and to transmit human experiences systematically.

            The theory is really narrow and unsound. It neglects the essential elements in the theory of knowledge .It regards knowledge as information of facts and statements to be condensed into compact and logical forms and memorized by the pupils.

            This theory is quite un-psychological as it neglects the child who is to be educated, his innate equipments for bearing, his inherited potentialities, propensities, attitudes and abilities, the psychological processes and products of learning.

Education as formation of mind

            Education as formation tries to form the mind by a proper presentation of materials. It is formation of mind by setting up certain association or connection of content by means of a subject matter.

Education as preparation

            Education as preparation is a process of preparation or getting ready for the responsibilities and privileges of adult life- preparation for “complete living”, this theory is the outcome of modern scientific tendency in education and has for its exponents men like Herbert Spencer, T. H. Huxley and others.

Education as mental discipline

            The theory of mental discipline is a traditional concept of education. It was in vogue in the Western countries for many centuries. It is still highly popular even today in our country. According to this theory, the process of learning is more important than the thing learned. This theory is based upon the traditional “Faculty Theory” of psychology according to which the mind is divided into a good number of separate faculties such as memory, attention, reasoning, imagination, perception, thinking judgment etc. Johan Locke was the classic representative of this theory. The outer world presents the material or content of knowledge, through passively received sensations. After the simple stuff of experience is furnished by the senses, one’s ideas, judgments, etc. are formed through the perfection of intellect.

Education as growth and development

            It is a modern concept of education. Change is the law of nature. Man undergoes changes and transformations from cradle to grave. These changes may be of different types such as physical, mental, moral and emotional. Two factors, training and environment condition every change. The original nature of man can be changed either by training on by his reaction to the environment. Whenever there is change there is growth. Through change, a living organism can take entirely a new shape and this again gives him powers to grow. Thus, Growing is education and getting education is growing. 

Education as direction

            Educate a child means directing the child in the proper direction. The young learners have innate powers, attitudes, interests and instincts. It is the essential function of education to direct those inborn instincts and powers properly in socially acceptable and desirable channels. The native impulses of the child may not conform to the socially accepted norms and behaviour patterns. So the child has to be directed, controlled or guided. It is the duty of the teacher to see that the active tendencies of children are not dispersed aimlessly. These are to be directed at various phases of life for their proper satisfaction.

Education as adjustment and self-activity

            Adjustment is essential to an individual for self-development. Education gives an individual the power of adjustment in an efficient manner. Through education, the child learns to adjust with the environment. That is why it is said education is adjustment and adjustment is education. In the process of continuous growth man has to adjust in multifarious and diverse life situations and environment. This is called adjustment and it requires self-activity. So education is nothing but adjustment through self-activity.

Education as social change and progress

            A society is a well-organized human community. A conglomeration of people may not create a society. There must be active co-operation and intimate interaction among the members of the community. A society is not constant or static. It is rather dynamic and subject to change. A society is composed of individuals and when the ideas of individuals change the society is bound to change. According to Maciver social change is a process, which influences and change human life in different directions. Change is the law of human life and society. The function of education is to maintain this progressive trend.

Education as Process Socialization

            Education is a process both in the narrower as well as in the wider sense. Ancient people used to collect facts and information about nature for survival. This is nothing but education. In the wider sense, education is acquisition of experience throughout life. Experience brings changes in human life and behaviour. It is the primary function of formal education to accelerate and facilitate social progress.


POINTS TO REMEMBER

Education: derived from educatum or educare means to train, to mould, to bring up, to lead out, to draw out or propulsion from inward to outward.

Narrower meaning:  A process for certain periods from schooling to colleges through fixed time, fixed curriculum, fixed classes, fixed subjects for degree or certificate.

Wider meaning: it goes on throughout the life from birth till death.

Need of aims: to bring certain desirable change, gives direction to activity.

Different aims:  The Vocational Aim, The Knowledge or Information Aim, The Culture Aim, The Character Formation Aim or the Moral Aim, The Spiritual Aim The Adjustment Aim, The Leisure Aim, The Citizenship Training Aim, The Harmonious Development Aim, The Complete Living Aim, The Social Aim.

Aims in India: Developing Democratic Citizenship Vocational Efficiency, Development Personality or Character, Education for leadership, Increasing national productivity; Achieving social and national integration; Accelerating the process of modernization; Cultivating social, moral and spiritual values.

Process: Education by Accretion or Storage Education as formation of mind, Education as preparation. Education as mental discipline, Education as growth and development, Education as direction, Education as adjustment and self-activity, Education as social change and progress, Education as Process Socialization. 


3 LESSON 3 CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN EDUCATION WITH PARTICULAR REFERENCE TO INDIA

LESSON 3

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN EDUCATION WITH PARTICULAR REFERENCE TO INDIA

-Satish Kumar

-Sajjad Ahmad

 

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Providing education to a large population has been a challenging task after independence. The illiteracy has been widespread throughout the country. Government was totally committed to avail the infrastructure and other facilities to its people. In order to achieve these tasks, it has constituted various committees and commissions from time to time. The first ever commission namely University Education Commission towards this effort was appointed in 1948. Later, in 1952, the secondary Education Commission was constituted. The development of Education in India particularly after independence has been guided by national aspirations as embodied in Indian Constitution. Education has been regarded in the constitution of India as the fundamental right of each and every citizen. Since the adoption of the constitution, the government has been making tremendous efforts to avail education to all sections of the society.

The literacy rate in India has risen to 65.38 percent. A significant proportion of this growth is attributed to the promotion of non-formal system of education through non-formal centers, community involvement and decentralized system for management of elementary education. Kerala has always been at the top in terms of the literacy rate among the states. The states, which fall below national average, are mostly the BIMARU (Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh) states. It may be noted that the elementary education has been given the top priority during recent years. After the elementary education it is the higher education which has been given due importance. Apart from the elementary and higher education, the technical education stood at number three up to fourth five plans. Then it was the secondary education, which has been given more importance.

Before 1976, education was the exclusive responsibility of the States. The Constitutional Amendment of 1976, which included education in the administrative implication required a new sharing of responsibility between the Union Government and the States.

The Central Government continues to play a leading role in the evolution and monitoring of educational policies and programs, the most notable of which are the National Policies on (NPE)­, 1986 and the Programme of Action (POA), 1986 as updated in 1992. The modified policy envisages a national System of Education to bring about uniformity in education, making adult education programmes a mass movement, providing universal access, retention and quality in elementary education, special emphasis on education of girls, establishment of pace-setting schools like Navodaya Vidyalayas in each district, vocationalization of secondary education syntheses of knowledge and inter-disciplinary research in higher education, starting more Open Universities in the States, strengthening of the All India Council of Technical Education, encouraging sports, physical education, Yoga and  adoption of  an effective evaluation method, etc. The POA lays down a detailed strategy for the implementation of the various policy parameters by the implementing agencies.

            The National System of Education as envisaged in the NPE is based on a national curricular framework, which envisages a common core along with other flexible and region-specific components.

Development in Expenditure

In line with the commitment of augmenting resources for education, the allocation for education has, over the years, increased significantly. The Plan outlay on education has increased from Rs 151,20 crore in the First Five Year Plan to Rs 43,825 crore in the Tenth Five Year Plan (2002-2007). The expenditure on Education as a percentage of GDP also rose from 0.64 per cent in 1951-52 to 3.74 per cent in 2003-2004 (BE).The outlay for Education in the Tenth Five Years Plan of  Rs 43,825 crore, is higher than the Ninth Plan outlay of Rs 24,908 crore by 1.76 times.

Development in Elementary Education

The Parliament has passed the Constitution’s 86th Amendment Act, 2002 to make elementary education a Fundamental Right for children in the age- group of 6-14 years. The progress of enrolment has increased from 192 (lakh) persons in 1950-51 to 1224 (lakh) persons in 2003-04 in the age group of 6-11 years. For the development of education at elementary level several provisions were laid down by the government.

Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan

The Scheme of Sarva Shilksh Abhiyan (SSA) was launched in 2001. The goals of SSA are as follows: (i) All 6-14 age children in school/ Education Guarantee Scheme Center/bridge  course by 2003. (ii) All 6-14 age children complete five year primary education by 2007 (iii) All 6-14 age children complete eight years of schooling by 2010 (iv) Focus on elementary education on satisfactory quality with emphasis on education for life (v) Bridge all gender and social category gaps at primary stage by 2007 and at elementary education level by 2010 and (vi) Universal retention by 2010. The programme covers the entire country with special focus on education needs of girls, SCs/ STs and other children in difficult circumstances. The programme seeks to open new schools in habitations which do not have schooling facilities and strengthen existing school infrastructure through provision of additional class rooms, toilets, drinking water, maintenance grant and school improvement grant. The SSA has a special focus on girls and children of weaker sections.

Education Guarantee Scheme and Alternative and Innovative Education

Education Guarantee Scheme and Alternative and Innovative Education (EGS and AIE) are an important component of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) to bring out of school children in the fold of Elementary Education. EGS addresses the inaccessible habitation where there is no formal school within the radius of one km. and at least 15-25 children of 6-14 years age group. Alternative Education intervention for specific categories of very deprived children e.g., child street children, migrating children, working children, children living in difficult circumstances and older children in the 9+ age group especially adolescent girls are being supported under EGS and AIE all over the country.

Mid-Day Meal Scheme

The National Programme of Nutritional Support to Primary Education (NP-NSPE),  popularly  known  as  the Mid-Day Meal Scheme, was formally launched on 21st, August 1995. The objective of the programme is to give a boost to universalisation of primary education by increasing enrolment, attendance and retention, and also improving nutritional status of children in primary classes studying in Government, Local Body and Government- aided schools. From October 2002, the programme has been extended to children studying in Education Guarantee Scheme (EGS) and other Alternative and Innovative Education (AIE) Learning Centres also.Under the scheme central assistance is provided to States for the following: (a) 100 grams of food grains per child per school day where there is a meal programme, alternatively three kg per child per month for 10 months, and (b) admissible transport subsidy for transport of food grains from the nearest FCI depot to the school subject to a ceiling of Rs 50 Per quintal.

District Primary Education Programme

            The Centrally sponsored Scheme of District Primary Education Programme (DPEP) was launched in 1994 as a major initiative to revitalize the primary education system and to achieve the objective of universalisation of primary education. DPEP adopts a holistic approach to universalize access, retention and improve learning achievement and to reduce disparities among social groups. Adopting an area-specific approach’ with district as the unit of planning, the key sensitivity to local conditions and ensuring full participation of the community. DPEP is based on the principle of ‘additionally’ and is structured to fill in the existing gaps. The programme components include construction of classrooms and new schools, opening of Non-formal/ Alternative Schooling Centers, appointment of new teachers, setting up early childhood education centers, strengthening of State Councils of Educational Training  through District Institute of Education and Training(DIETs), setting up of Block Resource Centers/Cluster Resource Centres, teacher training, development of Teaching Learning Material, Research based interventions, special interventions for promoting education of disadvantaged groups, girls, SC/ST, etc. initiatives for providing integrated education to disabled children and distance  education for teacher training have also been incorporated in the DPEP Scheme.

Operation Blackboard

The scheme of Operation Blackboard (OBB) was launched in 1987-88 with the aim of improving human and physical resource available in primary schools of the country. Provision of at least two reasonably large rooms, at least two teachers and essential teaching/ learning materials for every existing primary school were the components of the scheme. The scheme has been subsumed in Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) from 2002-2003.

Lok Jumbish Project

An innovative project “Lok Jumbish” with assistance from Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) was launched in Rajasthan to achieve education for all through peoples’ mobilization and their participation. Lok Jumbish Project (LPJ) has set-up innovative management structures incorporating the principles of decentralization and delegation of authority as well as building partnership with local communities and the voluntary sectors, intensive community mobilization, and schools mapping, processing as well as development of innovative design for community center school buildings programme.

Shiksha Karmi Project

The shiksha Karmi Project (SKP) aims at universalisation and qualitative improvement of primary education in remote and socio-economically backward villages in Rajasthan with primary attention given to girls. The project at present covers 3,650 villages in 150 blocks in Rajasthan. The Project provides primary education to 2.76 lakh children in day schools.

Mahila Samakhya

The Mihila Samakhya Programme (Education for Women’s Equality) started in 1989 is a concrete programme for the education and empowerment of women in rural areas, particularly of women from socially and economically marginalized groups. It is being implemented in more than 14,000 villages in 60 districts of nine states. The objectives of the scheme are to enhance the self-image and self-confidence of women; to create an environment where women can seek knowledge and information which empowers them to play a positive role in society; to establish a decentralized and participative mode of management; to enable Mahila Sanghas to actively assess and monitor educational activities in the villages; to provide opportunities for education for women and adolescent girls and to bring about greater participation of women and girls in both formal and non-formal education programme.

Janshala Programme

Janshala (GOI-UN) Programme is a collaborative effort of the Government of India and five UN agencies –  UNDP, UNICEF, UNESCO, ILO and UNFPE to provide programme support to the ongoing efforts towards achieving UEE. Janshala, a community based primary education programme, aims to make primary education more accessible and effective, especially for girls and children in deprived communities, marginalized groups, SC/ ST minorities, working children and children with specific needs.

Development in Teacher Education

As envisaged in the National Policy on Education  (NPE) and Programme of Action (POA) 1986, the Centrally-Sponsored Scheme of Restructuring and Reorganizations of Teacher Education of Teacher Education was taken up in 1987 to create a viable institutional infrastructure, academic and technical resource base for orientation, training and continuous upgradation of knowledge, competence and pedagogical skills of school teachers in the country. The scheme envisages setting up of DIETs in each district of the country to provided academic and resource support to elementary grade teachers and non-formal adult education instructors.

National Council For Teacher Education

The National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) was established in August 1995 with a view to achieve planned and co-ordinate development of teacher education system throughout the country and for regulation and proper maintenance of norms and standards of teacher education. Four Regional Committees of the Council have been set-up at Jaipur, Bangalore, Bhubaneswar, and Bhopal for Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western regions respectively.

National Bal Bhavan

National Bal Bhavan (NBB), New Delhi is an autonomous body fully funded by the Ministry of Human Resource Development, which was established for children in the age group of 5-16 years. Objectives of the National Bal Bhavan are to enhance the spirit challenge, experiment, innovate and create. National Bal Bhavan was founded by Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru in 1956.

Development towards Education Of Scheduled Castes And Scheduled Tribes

Article 46 of the Constitution states that, “The State shall promote, with special care, the education and economic interests of the weaker sections the people, and in particular of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and shall protect them from social injustice and all forms of social exploitation.” After independence, the Government of India has taken number of steps to strengthen the educational base of the persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is a historic stride towards achieving the long cherished goal of Universalisation of Elementary Education (UEE) through a time bound integrated approach, in partnership with State. SSA, Which promises to change the face of elementary education sector of the country, aims to provide useful and quality elementary education to all children in the 6-14 age group by 2010.

District Primary Education Programme (DPEP) The thrust of the scheme is on disadvantaged groups like girls, SCs/STs. Working children, urban deprived children, disabled children etc.

Janshala: The objective of Janshala is to support the efforts for UEE by providing primary education to the children from SCs, minorities, working children and children with special needs. Janshala emphasizes on active involvement of community in primary education programmes and training viz. Karnataka, Janshala programme is in operation in 139 Blocks of 9 States Orissa, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. The programme also covers the cities of Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar, Puri, Cuttack, jaipur, Lucknow, Ajmer, Bharatpur, Jodhpur and Bhilai.

Mahila Samakhya addresses traditional gender-imbalances in educational access and achievement. This involves enabling women (especially from socially and economically disadvantaged and marginalized groups) to address and deal with customs and struggle for survival, all of which inhibit their empowerment.

National Programme for Education of Girls at Elementary Level: The NPEGEL, under the existing scheme of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) provides additional components for education of girls under privileged/disadvantaged at the elementary level. The Scheme is being implemented in Educationally Backward Blocks (EBBs) where the level of rural female literacy is less than the national average and the gender gap is above the national average, as well as in blocks of districts that have at least 5 per cent SC/ST population and where SC/ST female literacy is below 10 per cent based on 1991.

Shiksha Karmi Project (SKP): SKP aims at universalisation and qualitative improvement of primary education in remote, arid and socio-economically backward villages in Rajasthan with primary attention to girls.

Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas: Under the scheme of Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya, 750 residential schools as being set up in difficult areas with boarding facilities at elementary level for girls belonging predominantly to the SC, ST, OBC and minorities. The scheme would be applicable only in those identified Educationally Backward Blocks (EBBs) where, as per census data 2001, the rural female literacy is below the national average and gender gap in literacy is more than the national average. Among these blocks, schools may be set up in areas with concentration of tribal population, with low female literacy and or a large number of girls out of schools.

Jan Shikshan  Sansthan (JSS) : JSS or Institute of  People’s  Education is a polyvalent or multifaceted adult education programme aimed at improving the vocational skill and quality of life of the beneficiaries. The objective of the scheme is educational. Vocational and occupational development of the socio-economically backward and educationally disadvantaged groups of urban/ rural population particularly mep-literates, semi literates, SCs, STs, women and girls, slum dwellers, migrant workers, etc.

Central Institute of Indian Languages (CIIL):  The Central Institute of Indian Languages, Mysore has a scheme or development of Indian Languages through research, developing manpower and production of materials in modern Indian Languages including tribal languages.

Kendriya Vidyalayas (KVs):  15 per cent and 7.5 per cent seats are reserved for SCs and STs respectively in fresh admissions. No tuition fees are charged from scheduled caste and scheduled tribes students up to class XII.

Navodaya Vidyalayas (NVs):  Reservation of seats in favour of children belonging to SCs and STs is provided in proportion to their population in the concerned district provided that no such reservation will be less than the national average of 22.5 per cent.

National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS):  The SC/ST students are given concession in admission fees to the extent of Rs 200 for bridge courses, Rs 250 for secondary courses and Rs 300 for senior secondary courses.

Development Towards Quality Improvement In Schools

During the Tenth Plan, it has been decided to introduce a composite Centrally Sponsored Scheme “Quality Improvement in Schools” The National Population Education Project (NPEP) was launched in April 1980 with a view to institutionalize population education in the school education system. This was an externally aided project, which was fully funded by United Nations Population Fund. This project is also being implemented in Higher and Adult education sector.

Evironmental Orientation to School Education

Centrally-sponsored Scheme “Environment Orientation to School Education” was initiated in 1988-89. The scheme envisages assistance to voluntary agencies for conduct of experimental and innovative programmes aimed at promoting integration of educational programmes in schools with local environmental conditions.

Improvement of Science Education in Schools

            To improve the quality science education and to promote the scientific temper, as envisaged in the National Policy on Education, 1986, Centrally sponsored Scheme; “Improvement of Science Education in Schools” was initiated during 1987-88. Under the scheme financial assistance was being provided to States/UTs and voluntary agencies. While voluntary agencies were provided assistance for conducting experimental and innovative programmes States/ Union Territories were assisted for provision of science kits to Upper Primary Schools, Setting up/up-gradation of science laboratories in Secondary/Senior Secondary Schools, Library facilities in Secondary/ Senior Secondary Schools and Training of Science and Mathematics teachers.

Introducation of Yoga in Schools

A Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Introduction of Yoga in Schools was launched in 1989-90. This   scheme aimed at giving financial assistance to States/UTs/NGOs. The scheme provided for Central assistance for expenditure on training of teachers, building up infrastructure i.e, hostel building for yoga trainees and furnishing grant and upgrading library facilities. This scheme is being implemented through the concerned Education Departments of the States/UTs and Non- Governmental Organizations.

Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti

The National Policy on Education-1986 envisaged setting up of model school, one in each District of the Country. A scheme was formulated under which it was decided to set-up co-educational schools. Navodaya Vidyalaya are fully residential co-educational institutions providing education up to senior secondary stage. The scheme, which started with only two schools on experimental basis in 1985-86 has grown to 513 schools covering as many districts in 34 States/UTs with over 1.68 lakh students on rolls as on 31 March 2005. More than 30,000 new students are admitted every year.

Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan

The Government approved the scheme of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan in 1962, on the recommendations of the Second Pay Commission. Initially, 20 regimental schools in different States were taken over as Central School. In 1965, an Autonomous Body called Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan was established with the primary objective of setting-up and monitoring Kendriya Vidyalaya to cater to the educational needs of the children for transferable Central Government Employees including Defence Personnel and Para-Military force by providing common programme of education.

Development towards Integrated Education for Disabled Children

The scheme of IEDC was started in 1974, provided for 100 per cent financial assistance, to State Governments UTs and NGOs towards facilities to disabled children integrated in the normal schools for Books and Stationary, Uniform, Transport Allowance, Escort Allowance, Readers Allowance for Blind Children, Equipment, Salary of teachers recruited for teaching Disabled Children.

Educational Development in North Eastern Region

The NE Region comprising of eight States has a high literacy level and is rich in ethnic cultural heritage with linguistic diversity. However, the region lacks infrastructure and facilities in educational institutions across sectors and there is a need to improve the quality of education imparted. The NE States have been provided grants under the Non Lapsable Central Pool of Resources (NLCPR) to improve their infrastructure facilities. The Empowered Committee administering NLCPR has, since its inception in 1998-99, approved proposals worth Rs 462.72 core as on 31 December 2004 for the development of educational infrastructure in  the NER. Funds amounting to Rs 386.34 crore have also been  released as on 31 December, 2004. Out of this, Rs 12.75 crore was released in 2004-05. In the Central sector, the proposals mainly relate to infrastructure development of Central Institutions like the five central universities in the North East which include construction of staff quarter, academic buildings, library buildings, administrative buildings and purchase of lab equipments, books, etc. These projects are in various stages of implementation.

Development in University and Higher Education

As present there are 342 universities and university-level institutions in India including 18 Central Universities, 211 State Universities, 95 Deemed Universities, 5 institutions established under State Act and 13 institutes of national importance apart from around 17,000 colleges including 1800 women colleges in India. Of these, 40 universities/ Institutions provide higher education in agriculture 49 in engineering and technology, 07 in Information and Communication Technology and 08 in law. The number of Open Universities is 11 and that of Women Universities is 06. The total enrolment of students in universities and colleges in 99.54 lakh while the number of teachers is 4.5 lakh.

Indira Gandhi National Open University

The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) established in September 1985 is responsible for the promotion of Open University and distance education system in the educational pattern  of the country and for coordination and determination of standards in such systems. The major objectives of the University include widening access to higher education to larger segments of the population, organizing programmes of continuing education, target groups like women, physically challenged and people living in backward regions and hilly areas, such as NE, KBK and those predominantly inhibited by tribals and SCs.

Minority Education

The National Policy on Education 1986, updated in 1992 envisages paying greater attention to the education of the educationally backward minorities in the interest of equity and social justice. In pursuance of the revised Programme of a Action (POA) 1992, two new Centrally-sponsored schemes, i.e. (i) Scheme of Area Intensive Programme for Educationally Backward Minorities; and (ii) Scheme of Financial Assistance for Modernisation of Madarsa Education were launched during 1993-94. Over a time, it has been felt that all these schemes need to be implemented in an integrated way as to have wider coverage, greater thrust and visibility of minority education programme. In the Tenth Plan the aforesaid two schemes have been merged to form the Area Intensive and Madarsa Modernization Programme. Justice sachhar committee had been appointed for objective study of the educational problems pertaining to Muslim minority, which has given its recommendation to the government.

Technical Education

The Technical Education System in the country covers courses in engineering, Technology, management, architecture, pharmacy, etc. The Ministry of Human Resource Development caters to programmes at undergraduate, postgraduate and research levels. The technical educational system at the central level comprises, among others, the following: a) The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), which is the statutory body for proper planning and coordinated development of the technical education system; b) Seven Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs); Six Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs); d) Indian Institute of Science (IISc),Bangolore; e) Indian Institute of Information Technology  and Management (IITM), Gwalior; Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), Allahabad; and its Extension Campus at Amethi; and Pt. Dwarka Prasad Mishra Institute of Information Technology Design and Manufacturing Jabalpur; and f) Eighteen National Institutes of Technology  (NITs) (converted from RECs with 100 per cent central funding).

 

POINTS TO REMEMBER

Audio

Development in Expenditure; Development in Elementary Education; Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan; Education Guarantee Scheme and Alternative and Innovative Education; Mid-Day Meal Scheme; District Primary Education Programme; Operation Blackboard; Lok Jumbish Project; Shiksh Karmi Project; Mahila Samakhya; Janshala Programme; Development in Teacher Education; National Council for Teacher Education; National Bal Bhavan; Development towards Education of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes; Development Towards Quality Improvement in Schools; Environmental Orientation To School Education; Improvement of Science Education In Schools; Development towards Integrated Education for Disabled Children; Educational Development in North Eastern Region; Development in University and Higher Education.


4 LESSON 4 EVOLUTION OF PHILOSOPHICAL THOUGHT IN EDUCATION: A BRIEF OVERVIEW

LESSON 4


EVOLUTION OF PHILOSOPHICAL THOUGHT IN EDUCATION:

A BRIEF OVERVIEW

 -Satish Kumar

-Sajjad Ahmad

 

Audio

Philosophy originated in ancient Greece under the pressure of questions about the nature of arete (translated as “virtue”). The Sophists (fifth-century B.C.) claimed that they could teach virtue, thereby challenging the traditional wisdom, which held that virtue is a natural possession of the few –the “nobly born,” whose virtues were celebrated in the epics of Homer (c. 850 B.C.) and the odes of Pindar (518-438 B.C.) .In the dialogues of Plato (c. 427-347 B.C.), Socrates (c.470-399 B.C.) is portrayed asking the question, Can virtue be taught? Discussion made it clear that no one know the nature of virtue. Thus another question naturally arose: What is the nature of virtue itself?  Socrates goes on to ask whether virtue is one thing or many things, and how we can know what it is. These are matters of philosophy in that they are question about the life worth living (ethics), knowing (epistemology), and the nature of reality (metaphysics). At the same time they are matters of education. In that answers to these questions can be found only in an educational process that aims to find out the nature of virtue. Thus questions such as what is worth knowing and how we can know it has both, a philosophical and an educational dimension. It is clear that, in their origins, philosophy and educational theory stood on common ground. Ideas on clarifying and elaborating the meaning of philosophical question become theories to be tested. The practical meaning of philosophical ideas-become an activity of education.  Philosophy of education like philosophy in other contexts, is thinking that results in ideas of unsettle things, that brings about something different from that what once had been taken as settled. Beginning in curiosity about the nature of things, philosophy of education is thinking about what to do in education.

In its origins, philosophy attempted to provide a unity in thought that is lacking in the ways reality comes to us, unorganized and fragmented. Yet unity in thought stands only as a possibility for the way things are experienced; can be found out only when ideas go to work, get tested in reality. So it is in philosophy of education:  Any unity that thinking proposes must be tried out in specific processes of education.

The educational thinking of Plato may be taken in two ways. (1) As dramatist of the life of philosophy. Here Plato leaves the philosophical-educational questions unanswered in a final sense. His dialogues are dramas of the life of reason, showing us that we do not know what we think we know, claiming that an admission of our ignorance is a necessary condition for knowing, and holding forth the possibility that further dialogues will clarify the nature of virtue. The conditions for knowing portrayed in his dialogues alert us to find ways of educating others and ourselves. If we ever succeed in knowing virtue, we must gain it through a process of self-examination and clarification in dialogues with others. (2) As philosopher–educator who shapes individuals from childhood to maturity. Inquiry into the nature of virtue continues in the Republic, where Socrates and his companions pursue the nature of Justice. What is necessary, Socrates argues, is knowledge of the Idea of the Good. To know the Good would be to know the source of all reality, the nature of that reality, the shape of things and the ways things take shape, including Justice and the other virtues. Plato does know the Good, but he takes the activity by which we strive to know it to be the ideal by which human beings are educated to be citizens.

Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) shared Plato’s idea that human being are social animals, that they can be human only in the life of a community. Like Plato, Aristotle holding that human beings are a part of nature.  What human beings feel, know, and do are attempts to discover the nature of things, which lies potentially within us. What individuals discover is something they share with a larger nature makes possible, their discoveries become part of social custom to be passed on, by education, to the young. Aristotle shows that striving for virtue is a social undertaking, an activity of education. Like Plato, Aristotle argued that the good must be discovered.

Epicureanism and Stoicism

Epicurus (341- 270 B.C.)  Founded the first about 306 B.C.  In his school, women, men, and slaves lived a communal life dedicated to seeking happiness through ataraxia (peace of mind).  One of Epicurus’ teachings was that in order to experience peace on mind we need to live free from trouble. We gain knowledge, therefore, to provide peace of mind. We aim for peace of mind, by avoiding experience that give us pain. Therefore Epicureans argued against participation in the political and social affairs of society. The aim was to live in obscurity, in a congenial atmosphere of friends, devoting time to gaining peace of mind. Where each person in a community of friends respects the peace of mind of others, it is friendship, rather than laws, that holds the community together. Zeno of Cilium (342-280 B.C.) was its founder around 300 B.C.  Stoicism was predominantly a moral philosophy.  Its ideal is that the life of reason is the highest virtue. Stoics shared with Socrates the idea that knowledge is virtue and reason is both end and the means of life. Learning to live according to reason, therefore, is the highest educational ideal. Human beings can strive for the best that is in their nature only by learning according to reason.

Rhetoric in Greek and Roman Education

Rhetoric grew to maturity alongside philosophy. Isocrates (436-338 B.C.), a teacher of rhetoric, made claims on behalf of philosophy. For Isocrates, the virtuous person was one who made the most of the community’s established opinions and long-standing customs in order to determine which courses of action to take.

The Roman rhetorician Cicero (106-43 B.C.) followed Aristotle in holding that orators must work with probabilities rather than certainties. Oratory is a way of action in which the orator celebrates the virtues that are learned through an education in the subject matters of philosophy and by living a life devoted to the pursuit of the highest virtues.

 

Philosophy in Early Christian Education

In Christianity, the highest virtues come from God. Greek philosophy and Roman rhetoric represented the highest ideals to be found in human teaching, but the diving teachings of Christ are higher in the order of Being. The former teach us, but only in imperfect and incomplete ways, while the latter teach us in the ways of God. Clement of Alexandria (c. 150-c. 215), one of the founders of Christian philosophy, held that the humanism and  naturalism of classical education cannot fully educate us; they come up short of the education  that  is needed, and must be superseded by the word of God.

Augustine (354-430) followed the founders of Christian philosophy and established the relationship between human and divine teachings. Philosophers, when they have God’s assistance, may make important discoveries; when they strive for the highest wisdom by use of reason. According to Augustine’s philosophy of history, whatever has taken place prior to the coming of Christianity is a preparation for Christianity itself; Some Christian educators argued that religious culture was the only culture that deserves to be taught.

Renaissances of the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries

John of Salisbury’s Metalogicon (1159) reveals a familiarity with Latin poets, grammarians, and rhetorical writings. John’s work was Christian defense of the arts of verbal expression and reasoning and, like the ancient rhetoricians and philosophers, he argued that they are to be studied for their influence on human conduct/ Logic, to be effective, must be used in the pursuit of knowledge and in the teaching to knowledge already gained. John argued that the arts are useful for the study of temporal things, as well as eternal truths, to which we have access through faith.

Alongside the humanistic studies, another method was making its way. It came to be called Scholasticism, essentially the application of reason to theological studies.  The growth of logic as the arbiter of all intellectual activity came to overshadow the other arts in the curriculum of the universities that grew to prominence in the thirteenth century.

Renaissance Humanism, Fourteenth to Sixteenth Centuries

By the fourteenth century, there was a renewed interest in Greek and Latin literature, which had been studied very little in the medieval universities. This literature consisted of grammar, rhetoric, poetry, history, and moral philosophy. This literature was read and interpreted in their original languages. The term humanism in this Renaissance was derived from the studia humanistic. Renaissance humanism was less a philosophical system that opposed itself to Scholasticism and more an educational curriculum that emphasized the studia humanitatis and, excluded logic, metaphysics, natural philosophy, mathematics, astronomy, law, and theology the essential curriculum of the medieval universities. The humanists emphasized the technical aspects of the arts of grammar and rhetoric, along with poetry, oratory, and history–the literary expressions of these arts. Thus they renewed an ancient tradition that had lived in the poets and rhetoricians of classical Greece and Rome.

The humanists studied classical authors as writers of incomparable classics, not as authorities in philosophy and theology. In principle, this means that the ability to speak and write clearly and logically is evidence that one comprehends a subject.

Empiricism and Rationalism in Early Modern Philosophy

 Francis Bacon (1561-1626) advocated an inductive method of investigation based on the idea that a study of the particulars of experience leads to universals. He contrasted this with what he took to be Aristotelian and Scholastic authority. According to Bacon, the logic of authority is a false method, a method of argument and disputation, not a method of inquiry and discovery. Rather than taking conclusions already reached as the basis of thinking, individuals must learn that such conclusion are suspect; nature, Becon thought, is more subtle than reason, and we need to develop a method of knowing that gets hold of the particular subtleties of nature. Instead of following the tendency of the mind to build things out of itself, the structure of the mind must be built out of the things of nature. Bacon’s appeal to firsthand experience was an effort to let facts speak for themselves and lead to an understanding of nature. 

In contrast, Rene Descartes (1596-1650) worked out a rationalistic method, beginning with what the mind can grasp clearly without doubting what it sees. The mind must be free to proceed by deduction from what is know intuitively to conclusions about particular things. Descartes method sought to avoid the limiting of reason by sensory experience. For him, the ideas that thought alone first grasps will show the way to the nature of sensory things. Descartes stood Bacon’s method upside down by holding that what is most evident are not empirical matters but logical conceptions that are self-evident to individual minds. Concepts of reason are primary. To know what is in nature, we must first see the reasons for its existence in our minds.

Despite their difference, empiricism and rationalism shared a common ground in their criticism of certain claims to authority. Each espoused an individualism that was an inheritance of the Christian conception of the worth of individual souls. Yet individualism had been made subordinate to the authority of religious doctrine in the institutions of medieval society. Thus empirical and rational methods of knowing carry with them a moral responsibility, to apply each method in a way that is true to oneself by learning to be free from dependence on others. Reality must be discovered by and ultimately reside in individual minds, either as a result of applying a Baconian method of induction, or as clear, undoubted intuitions as logical starting points, as in Descartes’s rationalistic method. Truth does not come to the mind on the authority of others, but individual minds must work to find it. Beginning in doubt about the truth of existing knowledge-claims, individuals engage in inquiry to establish the sciences by which the nature of things are known.

In emphasizing the moral responsibility of individuals to employ empirical and rational methods, the early modern philosophers made a problem out of knowing. No longer were human beings taken to be a part of nature, in a way that knowing itself is no less natural than feeling or breathings, as in the thinking of Plato and Aristotle.

The imperative that individual minds must do their own reasoning had its social counterpart in the idea that political organizations are social contracts freely agreed to by all individuals concerned. In a state of nature, individuals would not survive by themselves; thus they enter into contracts with one another for mutual benefit. John Locke (1632-1704),  in his treatise on government, held that human beings, in a state of nature, would be equals as well as free and  independent from one another. This is a moral equality in that no individual is subordinate to another, none has more than another. It is not a “biological” or “psychological” equality. Taken together with his argument that our knowledge originates in sensory experience, which means that no one is born in possession of innate ideas, Locke’s espousal of natural equality contributed to “environmentalism” in educational thinking. If our minds are “blank tablets” at birth, and if we are free and equal living with one another, then our natural conditions is such that what we become is an out-come of our education: Our biological and psychological differences are less important than our original ignorance, freedom and equality.

Method of Criticism in the Enlightenment

Lock’s empiricism, by which perceptions enter the mind, was joined with a rationalism according to which the mind reflects, using the ideas that have gained entry. Intuitive knowledge comes when the mind perceives immediately that ideas agree or disagree, as when the mind just knows that block is not white. Demonstrative knowledge comes when agreement or disagreement comes, not immediately, but with intervening ideas, then with one another.

Enlightenment thinkers were heirs of Locke in that they cherished the kind of understanding that comes with an increasing accumulation of empirical details together with the efforts of reason to make sense of them. Yet they went beyond Locke and worked out a critical method from which nothing was safe from criticism. Not content to criticize political institutions only, they took on the religious establishment. Denis Diderot’s Encyclopedia (1751) proposed to subject everything that human minds could take into account to critical scrutiny. In doing so, they would inquire into all arts, sciences, and works of the imagination; theology did not stand above the other sciences but, like them, was to be subject to reason.  However, it was not reason alone that they wanted to further; rather, “reason” was taken as one of the powers of the mind, to be joined with “memory” and “imagination” in the search for understanding.

Their critical spirit enabled them to see equality and freedom as possibilities to be sought in actual social conditions, rather than as an imagined original condition of human beings in a state of nature. Taking this idea seriously means that human nature is a moral and social condition that human beings must strive to bring into existence, rather than a nature that existed in some past or that is destined to come to pass in some future. This sense of nature as an ideal to be actualized has a radical corollary for human knowing and education.

The eighteenth century also spawned a sense of the limitations of reason in the midst of hopes that it could be used to improve human conduct. Expressed in different ways by Giambattista Vico (1668-1744), and Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) this sense was not antinationalistic; rather, it emphasized the point that reason, while necessary, does not suffice to explain the plight of human beings, In his New Science, Vico argued that the first human beings were not rational beings who wrote philosophy and made social contracts; instead, they were simple-minded creatures possessed of large imaginations. Even so, they had a metaphysics a “poetic” metaphysics, by which they made heroes.

Rousseau also acknowledged the importance of reason, but claimed that the very methods by which rational methodology does its work get in the way of understanding. His Discourse on the Origin of Inequality (1755) chronicled the development of the human race from a simple way life in which inequality has come to be an essential feature of the fabric of society. The good features of original human nature are scarcely recognizable in the prevailing conditions of modern society. The predicament of modern human beings in pursuit of an education according to nature is dramatized in Emile (1762), in which the tutor takes Emile away from the existing society and creates a special society that is closer to nature.

Nineteenth-Century Responses to Enlightenment Ideas

 In the early nineteenth century, there were different and something conflicting responses to the Enlightenment idea that, by learning to use their intelligence, human beings might ameliorate the intelligence, human beings ameliorate the conditions that stand in the way of extending freedom and equality.

G.W.F. Hegel (1770-1831) enlarged the scope of attention given to the limits of rationality earlier addressed by Vico and Rousseau. In Hegel’s historical account, “reason” in the Enlightenment sense of understanding is verstand. There is another way of knowing, vernunft, an insight into what has taken place, which comes only at the end of an activity. As we are living, we may have some control over what we are doing, but our rationality cannot assure us of the way things will turn out. Verstand is the kind of understanding by which empirical and rational methods are used to gain reliable knowledge. Vermonft, however, is not entirely under our control; it is akin to the work of poets, who use imagination to gain a kind of insight that is different from verstand. In the work of imagination, as in the working out of history, one cannot determine exactly what the outcome will be. While both kinds of reason had a place in Hegel’s philosophical system, others tended to emphasize the vermonft form of reason.

Romanticism also had an influence on a revised conception of childhood, seeing certain wisdom in the simplicity of children that is lost to adults who try to understand everything. This interest had its origins in Rousseau’s assertion that children are not just small versions of adults; rather they grow through distinct ages in which they have their own ways of thinking and being in the world that are fundamentally different from adult ways.

The empirical evidence in support of the idea of evolution in Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species (1859) enabled thinkers to take seriously the idea that species-the forms of plant and animal existence have come into being through time. Thus the long- standing belief that the nature of species is fixed and unchanging came under attack. To take seriously the idea that nature’s forms have come into being as a historical process is to acknowledge that the nature of things requires a method of inquiry that tries to take into account the history of its own development. Thus John Dewey thought of scientific method as “the evolutionary process grown conscious of itself.”

 

POINTS TO REMEMBER

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·         Originated in ancient Greece.

·    Educational thinking of plato may be taken in two ways: as a dramatist, as a philosopher educator.

·         Epicuranism and stoicism.

·         Rhetoric in Greek and Roman Education.

·         Philosophy in early Christian education.

·         Renaissance of 12th and 13th century.

·         Humanism.

·         Empiricism and Rationalism in early modern Philosophy.

·         Criticism in the enlightenment.

·         Responses to enlightenment ideas.



5 LESSON 5 AIMS IN EDUCATION

LESSON 5

AIMS IN EDUCATION

John Dewey

-Satish Kumar

-Sonia Gulati

 

Audio

John Dewey, greatest of the pragmatists and generally recognized as the most outstanding philosopher his country has yet produced, made significant contributions to virtually every field of philosophy as well as to such other areas of inquiry as education and psychology. Active for 70 years as a scholar, he was a prolific writer publishing approximately fifty books and more than eight hundred articles. Many of these have been translated into various foreign languages.

Aims of Education

According to Dewey the aim of education is the development of child’s powers and abilities. Impossible to lay down any definite principle for a particular kind of development, because this development will differ from one child to the next, in conformity with the unique abilities of the individual. The educator should guide the child according to the abilities and powers he observes in it. It is better, in Dewey’s opinion, to leave the question of educational objectives unanswered. In general, the aim of education is to create an atmosphere in which the child gets an opportunity to be active in and contribute to the social awakening of the human race. From the pragmatic standpoint, education aims at creating social efficiency in the child. Man is a social being who must develop at all. For this reason, education must aim at creating social efficiency and skill.

            Pragmatic education aims at instilling democratic values and ideals in the individual. Every individual must be given the freedom to develop his own desires and achieve his ambitions. Every individual must be equal to every other member of society. Such a society can be created only when there is no fundamental difference between the individual and collective interest. Education should create co-operation and harmony among individuals, instilling democratic values in school going children. In fact, the school itself is a miniature form of democratic society in which the child undergoes various forms of development, of which moral education and development is the most important. Morality can be developed through active participation, because such participation in the activities of the school trains the child in shouldering responsibility.

Pragmatic education is basically practical inasmuch as it aims at preparing the individual for future life in such a manner that he can fulfill his requirements and achieve contentment. Dewey was critical of the contemporary modes of education because they tend to drive the child away from democratic life by giving advantages to a small section of society. It also lays more stress on book or formal teaching than is really desirable. Hence Dewey laid the foundations of a progressive education in the form of a Progressive School, which aimed at establishing democratic values and developing the child’s personality. 

Curriculum

Dewey believed that the educational process has two aspects- psychological and social.

1.      Psychological : The curriculum and the method of education should be determined by the child’s instincts and abilities. The child should be educated according to his interest and inclination. Education should be attempted only after discovering the interests of the child, and these should be used as the basis for determining the curricula for the various stages of education .

2.      Social : All education has its beginnings in the individual’s participation in the social consciousness of the race. Hence it is necessary to create an atmosphere in the school, which will allow the child to take an active part in the social awakening of his group. This improves his conduct and develops his personality and abilities.

Principles of Curriculum Formation

1.      In general, the child shows four major interests i.e. the desire to talk and exchange ideas, discovery, creation and artistic expression.

2.      Curriculum to be flexible and not predetermined and rigid.

3.      The curriculum should include only those subjects, which can be related to the child’s pattern of life at that particular stage. This proximity to life can help in creating a distinctive unity in the knowledge imparted to him and thereby some harmony can be created in the teaching of history, geography, mathematics and language, etc. Dewey was very critical of the contemporary method of dividing knowledge into separate compartments, because he felt that such fragmentation of knowledge was unnatural. As far as possible the various subjects in the curriculum should be harmonized. 

Educational Method

1.      Learning by doing. The most well known principle enunciated  relates the theory of learning by doing, in which the child learns best when he himself performs actions, to particular subjects. The educator is not to stuff the child’s mind with information he himself has gathered throughout his life, but to guide the child to those activities by which the child can develop his own natural abilities and qualities.

2.       Integration of life and subjects. Dewey is of the opinion that there should be integration between the child’s life, his activities and the subjects he studied. All subjects to be taught to the child should be arranged around his activities in such a manner that he acquires knowledge in the process of doing activities to which he is accustomed. Mahatma Gandhi later on adopted Dewey’s principle in his plan of basic education.

3.      Catering to child interest. The next question that arises is that of designing the method of teaching according to the child’s interests. Dewey considers interest and effort to be of supreme importance in the process of education. The educator must understand the child’s interest before organizing the activities, which are useful for the child. It is better if this effort is free of any fear or compulsion, only then can Dewey’s ideas on educational methods later on led to the evolution of the project method in which the child was made to indulge in those activities which helped in the development of enthusiasm, self-confidence, self-reliance and originality.

4.      Participation in collective activities. In a democratic educational pattern, the child should be made to participate in collective activity, which can help in evolving a co-operative and social spirit.

            This method of education is apparently very suitable inasmuch as it meets the requirement of educational psychology. But in fact it has one inherent shortcoming that if the   education of the child is fashioned exclusively according to the child’s natural inclination he will remain ignorant of many subjects. Besides, even his knowledge of other subjects will remain disorganized, objections, which are accepted by Dewey himself.

School Organization

            Dewey has commented in detail upon the organization of schools as follows:

Role of the Educator

            Pragmatic education grants considerable importance to the educator, who is conceived as a servant of society. His task is to create in the school an environment, which will help in the development of the child’s social personality and enable the child to become a responsible democratic citizen. Dewey considers the educator to be so important that he goes so far as to call him God’s representative on earth. In determining the educator’s own behaviour in the school, Dewey accepts democratic principles and educational  psychology as suitable  guides for shaping the educator’s conduct.

Discipline

            If the educator conducts himself on the lines suggested above, discipline in the school becomes easy. Difficulties arise only when discipline takes the form of an external force employed to restrain the child from expressing his natural desires. This is the traditional concept of discipline, which was severely criticized by Dewey. He argued that discipline depends not only upon the child’s own personality but also upon the social environment in which he is placed. True discipline takes the form of social control and this is evolved when the child engages in collective activity in the school. It is therefore desirable to create an atmosphere in the school which encourages the children to live in mutual harmony and co-operation. Social environment and a mode, which inspire him to self-discipline rather than to subject him to long lectures.  A peaceful atmosphere is undoubtedly conducive to good and rapid work, but peace is only a means, not an end in itself.  The educator’s real task is to engage the children in work, which suits their natural inclination. Self-discipline is a better weapon, and this can be taught through responsibility. Thus he will also learn to lead a disciplined life as an adult.


Impact on Modern Education

            Many of Dewey’s ideas have had great impact on modern education. Some important facts in this connection are:

1.      Impact on the aims of education : Now a days, one of the important aims of education is the teaching of democratic values. Dewey insisted on developing social qualities in the child. In modern schools these aims of education have been accepted as valid.    

2.      Impact on educational methods : The greatest impact of Dewey’s ideas is seen in the methods of education in more recent times. Dewey suggested that education should be based on the child’s own experience, and also that the method of teaching should vary according to the interests and inclinations of each individual child. These ideas influenced modern teaching techniques and led to active teaching in schools. One such school is the Activity School. The project method is also a result of Dewey’s ideas. Even in the other schools, attention is paid to the principles of child psychology, which guide the educator in creating an atmosphere suitable for developing social consciousness in the educated.

3.      Impact on curriculum : The impact of Dewey’s ideas on the subject of curriculum led to the introduction of manual skill subjects into modern curricula. Special importance is now being attached to various kinds of games, objects, the use of certain tools and implements, etc. In selecting the subject to be taught, attention is now paid to the individual interests and abilities of the child.

4.      Impact on discipline : As a result of Dewey’s theorizing on the subject of discipline, now the students is entrusted with much of the work done in the school. In this manner the students are trained are self-control and democratic   citizenship. Apart this, once the student have to face responsibility, he is compelled to think scientifically and reason out things for himself.

5.      Universal education : Dewey’s thinking and ideal also lead to faith in universal and compulsory education. Education aims at the development of personality. Hence every individual must be given the opportunity to develop his personality through education. The current stress on the scientific and social tendency owes much to Dewey’s influence. He pointed but that education was a social necessity, in that it was not merely a preparation for life, itself. It aimed at the development of both the individual as well as society. This leads to the comprehensive development of the individual.  

 

POINTS TO REMEMBER

Audio

·         John Dewey – Pragmatist Philosopher.

·         Aims of education – Development of child’s power and abilities; different principles for different types of development; educators guidance according to child’s abilities and power; social efficiency; democratic values; freedom of development; individual and collective interests; co-operation and harmony; practical education; development of personality;

·         Curriculum – Psychological and Social.

·         Principle of curriculum formation.

·         Educational methods : Learning by doing; Integration of life and subjects; catering to child’s interests; participation in collective activities.

·         School Organization.

·         Role of educator.

·         Discipline.


6 LESSON 6 ‘A PREFACE ON NATIONAL EDUCATION’ AND ‘THE HUMAN MIND’

LESSON 6 

 

 ‘A PREFACE ON NATIONAL EDUCATION’ AND ‘THE HUMAN MIND’

Sri Aurobindo 

Satish Kumar

Sajjad Ahmad

Audio

Sri Aurobindo was born on 15 August, 1872 at Kon Nagar village of the Hoogli District of West Bengal. His father Krishna Dhan Ghosh was a well-known civil surgeon who studied medical science in England and returned to India as a totally Western-oriented gentleman. His mother Mrs. Swarnlata Devi was a religious Hindu lady Dr Ghosh was convinced of the value of Western system of education. Therefore, he sent his sons to an Irish Missionary School at Darjeeling. He went to England in 1879 and took his sons along with him. They were kept under the supervision of Mr. And Mrs. Drevet in London for their early education.  In 1885, the Drevets left England for Australia and Sri Aurobindo was admitted to St. Paul School of London.

Objectives of Education

            Defining the objectives of education Sri Aurobindo said. “It must be an education that for the individual will make its one central object the growth of the soul and its powers and possibilities, for the nation will keep first in view the preservation. Strengthening and enrichment of the nation-soul and its dharma and raise both into powers of the life and ascending mind and soul of humanity.

            Sri Aurobindo was not only one of the greatest philosopher and yogi of his time but also one of the greatest political leader, social reformer and educationist of his era.  He was a great patriot whose first concern was always the good of motherland. Therefore, he presented a national system of education which may be adopted for the educational reconstruction in India and at the same time develop the Indians as world citizens and the fore- runners of the advent of the only gives and important place to individual and nation but also to humanity.  The national scheme of education will be not only from the point of view of the needs of the country but also from the standpoint of the needs of humanity. It is so since the highest principle governing the life of individual and nation is the humanity itself. Sri Aurobindo everywhere considers fulfilinent of Swadharma as the law of life. Each individual in a nation has to fulfill his Swadharma. The purpose of education in a nation is to prepare the individual to serve their roles according to their status in society. Individual differences are the basis of modern system of education. The child is, “A soul with a nature and capacities of his own, who must be helped to find them, to find himself, to grow into their maturity, into a fullness of physical and vital energy and utmost breadth, depth and height of his emotional, his intellectual and his spiritual being.” Sri Aurobindo’s philosophy is summarized thus, “The meaning of the word education is to reduce the inner, hidden, latent, dormant, potential secret within every human being, secret because it is not of the senses but of the inner truth of being and because it is that most unknown part of the being which has yet to evolve to its full stature”.

The True Education

            Defining true education, Sri Aurobindo wrote, “There are three things which have to be taken into account in true and living education, the man, the individual in his commonness and in his uniqueness, the nation or people and universal humanity. The true education should take into account not only the individual but also the nation and the humanity.  It has to prepare the mind and soul of the individual and also of the nation to serve humanity. It has to unfold the individual potentialities, uniqueness and commonness. At the same time it has to develop a right relation of the individual with the life, mind and soul of the community and humanity. In the words of Sri Aurobindo, the true national education is that, “which helps to bring out to full advantage, makes ready for the full purpose and scope of human life all that is in the individual man and which at the same time, helps his to enter into right relation with the life, mind and soul  humanity of which he himself is a unit and his people or nation a living, a separate and yet inseparable member”.

            Besides Swadharma, Swabhava determines the role of a nation. Swadeshi was the main principle in Sri Aurobindo’s political philosophy. Each nation, according to him, has to grow and develop in tune with its peculiar Swabhav and Swadharma. Thus, the nation has to develop its mental, ethical and aesthetic being to make it a fit instrument for the growth of the soul. This is the highest purushartha. India, according to Sri Aurobindo, is a nation, which has to fulfil a spiritual role in the community of nation. Its ideal for the humanity also is spiritual.

Rational Education

            In his philosophy everywhere Sri Aurobindo has supported reason like any staunch rationalist. A rational education, according to Sri Aurobindo, includes the following three things:

1.      To teach men how to observe and know rightly the facts on which they have to form a judgment.

2.      To train them to think fruitfully and soundly.

3.       To fit them to use their knowledge and their thought effectively for their own and the common good.

Meeting of East and West

            Brought up in the West Sri Aurobindo had the first hand knowledge of the Western system of education he was conversant with the advantages of European system of education. Sri Aurobindo was a votary of the synthesis of whatever is good in East and West.  Therefore, while presenting a scheme for Indian education, he advocated synthesis of ancient Indian educational ideals along with the Western methods and techniques. As he said, “The first problem in a national system of education is to give an education as comprehensive as the European and more thorough, without the evils of strain and cramming. This can only be done by studying the instruments of knowledge finding a system of teaching which shall be natural, easy and effective. It is only by strengthening and sharpening these instruments of their utmost capacity that they can be made effective for the increased work which modern conditions require. The muscles of the mind must be thoroughly trained by simple and easy means, then, and not till then, great feasts of intellectual strength can be required of them.”

Integral Education

            True education, according to Sri Aurobindo, is not only spiritual but also rational, vital and physical. In other words, it is an integral education. This integral education has been explained by Sri Aurobindo’s closest collaborator the Mother, in these words, “ Edcuation to be complete must have five principal aspects relating to the five principal activities of the human being: the physical, the vital, the mental, the psychic and the spiritual. Sri Aurobindo’s scheme of education is integral in two senses. Firstly, it is integral in the sense of including all the aspects of the individual being, physical, vital, mental, psychic and spiritual. Secondly, it is integral in the sense of being an education not only for the evolution of the humanity. The ultimate aim of education is the evolution of total humanity, which includes the evolution of the nation, which in its turn depends upon the evolution of the individual.

Supramental Education

            The education is Supramental education that leads to our evolution towards the Supramental. This Supramental evolution, however, will necessarily pass through and only after the evolution of the physical, the vital, the mental and the psychic.

            The vital education is indispensable, thus vital education includes sense training and the development of character. This character again will be developed according to individual differences. It requires redirection and transformation of the instincts and emotions, drives and propensities. The physical, vital and mental education are the means to develop the personality, the psychic education alone leads to the future evolution of man. Sri Aurobindo’s system of education does not aim only at the adjustment and normal development of the human personality but its total growth and transformation. It is only after one gets through the physical, vital, mental and psychic education and realizes a certain transformation that one can enter into Supramental education. The idea of Supramental education like that of the psychic education is Aurobindo’s significant contribution   to the field of education.

Aims of Education  

The aims of education of Sri Aurobindo are as follows:

1.  Perfection :  Sri Aurobindo was a perfectionist. He was never satisfied with pursue a more perfect method of realization of perfection of human race.  It is hence that he presents his integral yoga as a solution not only of the individual needs but also of the social and political problems facing nation.

2.  Harmony : Harmony is the key to understand Sri Aurobindo’s thought everywhere. Those who complain about the difficulty in understanding his writings lack this inherent urge to harmony. On the other hand, those who seek harmony easily understand Sri Aurobindo’s works. Sri Aurobindo searches after the principle of harmony in the individual, community and humanity and aims at its realization. He seeks to achieve harmony of the individual by the growth and evolution of his different aspects such as physical, vital, mental and psychic, etc. For this he proposes a scheme of physical, vital, mental, moral, religious and spiritual education. He also seeds harmony of different individuals in a community. Compatibility and not uniformity is the law of collective harmony.

3.  Evolution : The edifice of Sri Aurobindo’s philosophy is based upon his theory of evolution. Therefore, Sri Aurobindo aims at the evolution of the individual, nation and humanity through education. Evolution involves not only growth but also transformation, not only adjustment but also a more intimate harmony.

4.  Humanisation : Education, according to Sri Aurobindo, aims at man-making. Sri Aurobindo’s system of national education ultimately aims at evolution of humanity.

5.  Harmony of the individual and collectivity. While most of the thinkers in social-political field have either laid emphasis upon the individual or the collectivity, Sri Aurobindo aims at realization of harmony between individuals and also between nations.

6.  Building the innate powers : The central aim of education according to Sri Auropindo is, “The building of the powers of the human mind and spirit-the evoking of knowledge and will and of the power to use knowledge, character, culture that at least if not more”. The child is born with certain innate powers of the body, the vital, the mind and the spirit. The aim of the school and the teacher is to develop these powers to their perfection.

7.  Cultivation of   values : The present crisis of man is due to the chaos of values. The values to be cultivated should be physical, mental on value. The supreme value in Sri Aurobindo’s  thought is harmony.

The Educational Model

            Sri Aurobindo outlined a national system of education. A model to realize his scheme was developed by international university at Pondicherry. The fundamental principle underlying the model was freedom since freedom is the only essential spiritual principle working anywhere. The idea was to give full freedom to the individual growth of the students.

The School

            The ultimate ideal of the school is man-making. It prepares the students to work first as a human being and then as a member of a nation and finally as an individual. Sri Aurobindo believes in three ultimate principles, individuality, commonality and essentiality. Theses, in other words, are the students, the society and the humanity, Integral evolution according to him, must include evolution of all these three elements. The school should treat all children as equal and provide sufficient scope for the development of their individual variations without insisting upon similarities. Integral school four types of rooms are required to carry on various activities:

1.            Rooms of silence

2.            Rooms of collaboration

3.            Rooms of consultation

4.            Lecture rooms

            Thus the school will develop different types of activities such as silence, collaboration, consultation and lectures. It will provide play, activity, discovery innovation and finally development of the powers of the body, mind and spirit of the students. In brief, the integral school will provide opportunities for integral development.

The Teacher

            Sri Aurobindo has assigned a very important place to the teacher. His philosophy of education, therefore, is paid centric the teacher remains the philosopher and the guide. In fact, the real teacher is within the students. He has to create an atmosphere so that the students may grow freely. The teacher acts as an aid, a means and a channel. In brief, the teacher should be an integral yogi.  He should be able to eliminate his ego, master his mind, develop an insight into human nature and to progress in impersonalisation. He should be absolutely disciplined and having an integrated personality. The most important thing in a teacher is not the knowledge but the attitude. An intellectual excellence is not sufficient without a development of other aspects of personality. The teacher should have the capacity to project himself to the students so that he may have an understanding of the needs of the students.

The Curriculum

            The essential principle of Sri Aurobindo’s philosophy of education is freedom. Unity is never demanded at the cost of diversity. On the other hand, diversity creates a rich unity. Therefore, no rigid scheme of curriculum has been prescribed. The earliest permissible age for starting regular study according to Sri Aurobindo is seven or eight years. The proper medium for early education of the child is the mother tongue. The following criteria for planning curriculum are found in Sri Aurobindo’s writings:

1.  Human nature : The curriculum should aim at developing whatever is already given in seed form in the child. Education can only lead to the perfection of the instruments, which are already present in the students. Nothing can be taught or imposed from outside.

2.  Individual differences:  The curriculum should be planned according to individual difference. The mind has to be consulted in its own growth.  The aim of the teacher is to help the growing soul in drawing out his best and to make it perfect for a noble use.

3.  From near to the far: Another principle governing the planning of curriculum is to proceed from near to the far, from that which is to that which shall be.

4.  Modern and up-to-date: Sri Aurobindo was a modern thinker with a love for modernity and up-to-date knowledge. Therefore, he prescribed that the education must be up-to-date in form and substance and modern in life and spirit.

5. Universal knowledge: The curriculum should include whatever is universally true. That is the basis of all scientific knowledge and philosophy.

6. Successive teaching: Sri Aurobindo disagrees with some educationists who wish to introduce every subject simultaneously to the child. He prescribes that the subjects should be taught successively.

7. Co-curricular activities : The school should provide not only academic but also co-curricular activities.

8. Five-fold curriculum : Integral education is psychic and the spiritual education. Therefore, the curriculum must be fivefold according to these five types of education

9. Multisidedness : Integral education is multisided. It aims at all-round growth. Therefore its curriculum involves music, poetry, art, painting and sculpture, besides the academic subjects. These are necessary for the aesthetic development of the child.

10.  Provision for the genius : The curriculum must provide for the genius. According to Sri Aurobindo, “What we call genius is part of the development of the human range of being and its achievements especially  things of the mind and their will can carry us half way to the divine.

11.  Moral and religious education : Curriculum for moral education should aim at refining the emotions and forming the proper habits and associations. Thus the aim of the curriculum according to Sri Aurobindo is the actualization of the potentialities of the students. The curriculum should not be fixed but flexible and evolutionary. A variety of choice and opportunities must be prescribed for maintaining the freedom of growth. The integral curriculum should find a due palace for every subject and every discipline.

 

POINTS TO REMEMBER

Audio

Objectives of education : growth of soul; its powers and possibilities; strengthening and enrichment of the nation-soul and its dharma.

·         Considers fulfilment of Swadharma as the law of life.

·         True education : the man, the individual, the nations development.

·         Swadeshi – main principal

·         Rational education

·         Convergence of east and west.

·         Integral education

·         Supramental education.

Aims of education : Perfection; Harmony; Evolution; Humanization; Harmony of individual and collectively; building the innate powers; cultivation of values.

·         Educational models

·         The school

·         The teacher

·         The curriculum : Human nature, individual differences, from near to the far, modern and up-to-date; universal nature; successive teaching; co-curricular activities; five fold curriculum; multisidedness; provision for the genius; moral and religious education.


7 LESSON 7 “MY SCHOOL”

LESSON 7

“MY SCHOOL”

Rabindranath Tagore

-Satish Kumar

                                                     -Sajjad Ahmad

Audio

Since our objective is to draw attention to the writings of Rabindranadh Tagore on education by means of selected excerpts, an elaborate introduction is superfluous. It is best to let Tagore speak for himself. However, historically situating Tagore’s ideas on education in the context of his times might be useful for those not familiar with these writings for two reasons. First, the commentaries by a number of scholars on his writings are unfortunately insufficiently sensitive to the evolution of his ideas in interaction with their intellectual and social environment. Secondly, we must also bear in mind that most of his writings on education were written in the Bengali language and very few of these are available in English translation. Some of the early writings, particularly those written during the 1905-1907 Swadeshi agitation, which are of formative importance in the history of the National Education Movement, have not been translated.

In 1892 Tagore wrote his first major essay on education in India. He was only 31 then and had no claim to be considered an authority on education. In this essay written in Bengali and entitled ‘The Mismatch of Education’, Tagore made a searing critique of the colonial pattern of education. Based on his own experience of schooling during childhood and his observations in later life, he saw the system instituted by the British government as an incompetent imitation of the English model which educated only a few and inadequately at that. This critique constituted an agenda for developing a truly Indian educational institution. It took the shape of the ‘asram’ he founded in Santiniketan in 1901; the object was to locate the school in the lap of Nature, away from the colonial metropolis of Calcutta, to build an ambience that would be responsive to the culture of the country and its people, and to offer education in the mother knowledge. Tagore search was for an alternative to the colonial pattern of education, which at that time be thought lay in the ‘asram’ concept of classical India.

Tagore’s ideas underwent a change in 1905 with the beginning of the Swadeshi and the national education movements. In Bengal. In this second phase, roughly covering the years between 1905 and 1915. He took a leading role in articulating the nationalist ideas on education; but he retained his individuality and his ideas were not always congruent with those of the political leaders of the Swadeshi agitation.

In 1912, in an essay called ‘Sikshvidhi’ he wrote: ‘we cannot bring to life a particular system of system of education by calling it national. The system of education, which is born of variously, directed endeavors of various people of this nation that is what can be called national. Thus, as always, Tagore defended organic diversity against mechanical unity and opposed the sectarian and parochial outlook, which is intolerant towards diversity.

We can discern a third phase in the evolution of Tagore’s educational philosophy in the period 1914 to roughly 1933. The First World War turned his mind towards an aspect of European nationalism:  he felt that the global struggle between imperialistic powers was the outcome of aggressive and exploitative European nationalism, and that kind of nationalism was alien to Indian civilization which had always been SyncreticPluralistic and open to intercultural exchange and understanding. He thought that India needed an institution where knowledge will be exchanged and compared, where India’s knowledge can be located and analyses in the perspective of the knowledge acquired by the entire mankind. The concept of Visva Bharati took shape and was formally found in 1921.

Tagore started the Rural Reconstruction center and a new experiment in schools for Sriniketan. He devoted all his private resources to these efforts, including the money from the Noble Prize as well as the considerable income from the royalty on his writings. At the same time, Tagore’ s writings in this period were replete with reflections on the limitation of what he had created. Visva Bharathi was an idea and the institution named after it could not, like most other institutions, fulfill all the ideals it was intended to realize. Moreover, by the early 1930s there was another paradigm change in Tagore’s educational thinking. He from the early 1930s the focus of his attention was on lokasiksha or people’s education. The indigenous pre-modern educational system had been allowed to die by the colonial administration. The modern schools and colleges even though inspired by nationalist ideals, failed to spread education beyond their walls and among the people:

On the one hand in our country the spread of traditional education has been impeded and people suffer from lock of education as they do when it does not rain. On the other hand the modern education that came did not flow like a river towards the common people of this priests who levy a tax and have numberless rules.

Tagore said, must be naturalized in the Indian soil and the opportunity for education must not be limited  to the higher rungs of society. Leaving untouched the layers below. Tagore made a concrete suggestion that anticipated the idea of the Open University- a syllabus to be announced and examination to be conducted by the University of Calcutta without requiring school or college attendance and payment of fees. The plan, needless to say was rejected by the University authorities of the day. Tagore commented on the growth of science in Europe and compared it with the state of science in India.

Tagore felt that the Wardha pattern put an overwhelming emphasis on practical training in the crafts and excluded from its purview the element of  ‘play’ and artistic creativity. However, he recognized a convergence between his idea ofloke-siksha and the Gandhi scheme for basic education. In 1940, in his last public pronouncement a few months before his death, Tagore tried to focus public attention on the inequality in education, which stood in the way of social equality.

 My School

Audio

 I started a school in Bengal when I was nearing forty. Certainly this was never expected of me, who had spent the greater portion of my life in writing, chiefly verses.  Therefore people naturally thought that as a school it might not be one of the best of its kind, but it was sure to be something outrageously new. Being the product of daring inexperience.

This is one of the reasons why I am often asked what is the idea upon which my school is based. The question is a very embarrassing one for me, because to satisfy the expectation of my questioners.

In the first place, I must confess it is difficult for me to say what is the idea, which underlies my institutionFor the idea is not like a fixed foundation upon which a building is erected. It is more like a seed, which cannot be separated and pointed out directly, it begins to grow into a plant.

Those days were unhappy ones for me I cannot altogether ascribe to my peculiar temperament or to any special demerit of the schools to which I  was sent. It may be if I had been a little less sensitive. I could gradually have accommodated myself to the pressure and survived long enough to earn my university degrees. But all the same schools are schools. Though some are better and some are worse, according to their own standard.

The young mind should be saturated with the idea that it has been born in a human world, which is in harmony with the world around it. And this is what our regular type of school ignores with an air of superior wisdom, severe and disdainful. It forcibly snatches away children form a world full of mustery of God’s own handiwork, full of the suggestiveness of personality. It is a mere method of discipline, which refuses to take into account the individual. For according to the school life is perfect when it allows itself to be treated as dead, to be cut into symmetrical conveniences. And this was the cause of my suffering when I was sent to school. For all of a sudden I found my world vanishing from around me, giving place to wooden benches and straight walls staring at me with the blank stare of the blind. I was not a creation of the school master, the Government  Board of Education was not consulted when I took birth in the world. But was that any reason why they should wreak their vengeance upon me for this oversight of my creator?  My mind had to accept the tight-fitting encasement of the school which, being like the shoes of a mandarin woman, pinched and bruised my nature on all sides and at every movement. I was fortunate enough in extricating myself before insensibility set in.    

However, it is certain that children did not bargain for this muffled and screened world of decency when they were ready to be born upon this earth. If they had any idea that they were about to open their eyes to the sunlight, only to find themselves in the hands of the education department till they should lose their freshness of mind and keenness of sense, they would think twice before venturing upon their career of humanity.  It was a special arrangement for giving lessons.  It could only be suitable for grown up people who were conscious of the special need of such places and therefore ready to accept their teaching at the cost of dissociation from life. But children are in love with life, and it is their first love, all itscolour and movement attract their eager attention.  Children are not born ascetics, fit to enter at once into the monastic discipline of acquiring knowledge.

But society has made its own arrangements for manipulating men’s minds to fit its special patterns.  These arrangements are so closely organized that is difficult to find gaps through which to bring in nature. There is a serial adjustment of penalties, which follows to the end one, who ventures to take liberty with some part of the arrangements, even to save his soul. This is why when I had to face the problem of my own son’s education I was at a loss to give it a practical solution. The first thing that I did was to take him away from the town surroundings into a village and allow him the freedom of primeval nature as far as it is available in modern days. He had a river, noted for its danger, where he swam and rowed without check from the anxiety of his elders. He spent his time in the fields and on the trackless sand-banks, coming late for his meals without being questioned. For which privations I am sure, he was pitied and his parents blamed by the people for whom society has blotted out whole world. I for my part believe in the principle of life, in the soul of man more than in methods. I believe that the object of education is the freedom of mind, which can only be achieved through the path of freedom-though freedom has its risk, and responsibility as life itself has. I know it for certain, though most people seem to have forgotten it, that children are living beings-more living than grown-up people who have built their shells of habit around them. Therefore it is absolutely necessary for their mental health and development that they should not have mere schools for their lessons, but a world whose guiding spirit is personal love. It must be an ashram where men have gathered for the highest end of life, in the peace of nature; where life is not merely meditative, but fully awake in its activities. Where boys minds are not being perpetually drilled into believing that the ideal of the self-idolatry of the nation is the truest ideal for them to accept: where they are bidden to realize man’s world as God’s kingdom to whose citizenship they have to aspire; where the sunrise and sunset and the silent glory of stars are not daily ignored; where nature’s festivities of flowers and fruit have their joyous recognition from man; and where the young and the old, the teacher and the students, sit at the same table to take of their  daily food and the food  of their eternal life.

Rabindranath Tagore’s Philosophy of education and its influence on Indian education

Rabindranath Tagore believed that the aim of education is self-realization. He himself was a poet and a saint, who had, through his imagination and insight, realized the universal soul in himself and in nature. He believed that this realization was the goal of education. Because the universal soul is the root of our own soul, man’s aim in life is to reach that universal soul of which all human beings are parts. The evolution of nature is consciously or unconsciously driving us towards this universal soul, a process that can be assisted by education. Even if it is not assisted, the progress towards the universal soul will continue, but then individuals will be deprived of self-realization. It is thus evident that Rabindranadheducational philosophy is an adjunct of his general philosophy of life. He believed that every human being is one who has potentialities of progressing towards the Super human being, the universal soul. His conception of the universal soul bore clear imprint of the Gita and Upanishadic philosophies.

Principles of Self-Education

Self-education is based on self-realization and the process of self-realization is as permanent as that of education. What is most important in this is that the students must have faith in himself and in the universal self-underlying his own individual soul. All those actions, which provide a natural sense of satisfaction and contentment, will promote the educative process. This contentment is the reaction of the soul, and hence not the same as mere satisfaction and pleasure. In following Rabindranadh concept of self-education, the students had to follow the following three principles

1.   Independence- Rabindranath believed in complete freedom of every kind for the students, the freedom of intellect, decision, heart knowledge, action and worship. But in order to attain this freedom, the edcuand had to practice equanimity, harmony and balance. Rabindranath interprets independence as normalcy or the fact of being natural. In other works, when intelligence, feeling and determination are naturally distributed, it can be said to be a state of freedom. This independence is not to be confused with the absence of control, because it is self-control, it implies acting according to one’s own rational impulse. Once this level of freedom has been achieved, there is no danger of the individual straying from his path, because his senses, intelligence, emotional feelings and all other powers are directed by his ego.

2.    Perfection- The second active principle underlying self-education is that of perfection. Perfection here implies that the students must try to develop every aspect of his personality and all the abilities and power with which he has been endowed by nature. Hence, the aim of education is not merely passing examinations, acquiring degrees and certificates of merit and ultimately achieving economic self-sufficiency through pursuing some profession. The sole aim of education is development of the child’s personality, which is possible only when every aspect of the personality is given equal importance, when no part of the personality is neglected and no part is stressed undesirably.

3.   UniversalityDevelopment of the individual remains imperfect and incomplete until he acquires as abiding faith in the universal soul, a part of which exists inside himself. And for this, it is necessary to identify one’s own soul with the universal soul. Thus, education exists not in simple development but it inheres in literally a rebirth in which the individual rises above the limitations of his individual personality and loses this individuality in the inherits of the universal soul. One can search for this universal soul not only within oneself, but also in every element of nature and of one’s environment. It is evident from the foregoing account that the aim of Rabindranath’s pattern of education is independence, perfection and universality. In the process of education, the educator creates an environment in which the child’s personality undergoes a free, perfect and unrestricted development.

Aims of Education

According to Rabindra Nath, the aim of education is self-realization. According to him, this realization by every one is the goal of education. Self-realization, according to Rabindranath, means the realization of the universal soul in one’s self. Man’s aim of life is to achieve this status. It is a process, which cannot be realized without education.

1.      Integral Development: Defining the aim of education, Rabindranath says,  “The fundamental purpose of education is not merely to enrich ourselves through the fullness of knowledge, but also to establish the bond of love and friendship between man and man.” This is the humanistic aim of education in Tagore’s philosophy. His approach to ultimate reality as integral. He believes in an inner harmony between man and Nature and God.

2.       Physical Development: Like Vivekananda, Rabindranath condemned the prevalent system of education, which partially exercised the intellect only to the entire neglect of the body. According to Rabindra Nath,  “Education of the body in the real sense, does not exist in ply and exercise but in applying the body systematically to some useful work.”. It is hence that he so much emphasizes games in school education. Pointing out the value of physical activities in the child’s education, he says,  “Even if they learn nothing, they would have had ponds, plucking and tearing flowers, perpetrating thousand and one mischief’s on Mother Nature, they would have obtained the nourishment of the body, happiness of mind and the satisfaction of the natural impulses of childhood.”  Almost all contemporary Indian philosophers of education, including Gandhi, Vivekananda, Dayananda and Sri Aurobindo, besides Tagore lay emphasis upon the importance of setting educational institutions in natural environment so that the students may learn by their touch with Nature.

3.      Mental Development: Besides the physical aim of education, Tagore equally lays emphasis upon the mental aim of education.  Like Vivekananda, he is critical of the prevalent system of education, which laid sole emphasis upon bookish learning.  To quote Rabindranath, “We know the people of books, not those of the world, the former are interesting to us, but the latter tiresome.” In fact, the intellectual aim of education, according to Rabindranath, is the development of the intellectual faculties which should be developed through education these are – the power of thinking and the power of imagination.  Education, which puts too much stress on memory and too little on imagination and thinking.

4.      Harmony with Environment: In the end, the aim of education according to Rabindra Nath, is the harmony of the students with the environment.  The student should know his environment and create harmony with it. To quoteRabindra Nath, “True education consists in knowing the use of any useful material   that has been collected to know its real nature and to build along with life a real shelter for life.” This is particularly true about the rural educationEducation should imbibe his cultural heritage and should be able to use it in his interaction with the environment.

5.      Earning Livelihood: Thus, about the aim of education, Tagore’s approach is realistic. He however, does not favourthe utilitarian aim of education. This is his utilitarian aim of education. This is his objection against the imposition of British system of education upon India. He says, “Knowledge has two departments: one pure knowledge, the other utilitarian knowledge. Whatever is worth knowing is knowledge. But Rabindranath does not ignore the earning of livelihood aim of education. He appreciates the practical bias in Western system of education. Therefore, he says, “From the very beginning, such education should be imparted to them (village folks) that they may become practically   efficient in all respects for earning their livelihood.” While he is critical of the British system of education which wanted to create clerks out the Indian educated people, he emphasizes that the real aim of education is to develop men and women who may be able to fulfill the needs of the country.

6.      Multisided Aim- The above discussion concerning the means of education according to Rabindranath makes it clear that his is a multisided attack on this problem. He is against any one-sided aim of education. He is a humanist. A humanistic aim of education requires a multisided approach.

 

POINTS to REMEMBER

Audio

·   Self realization is the main aim of education.

·   Principles of self-education; independence, perfection; universality.

· Aims of education : Integral development, physical development, mental development; harmony with environment; earning livelihood; multisided aim. 



8 LESSON 8 TOWARDS NEW EDUCATION

LESSON 8

TOWARDS NEW EDUCATION

M. K. Gandhi

-Satish Kumar

-Sajjad Ahamd

-Sonia Gulati

Audio

Elaborating his views about the aims of education, Gandhiji has said, “By education I mean an all-round drawing out of the best in child and man, body, mind and spirit. Literacy is not the end of education, not even the beginning. It is one of the means whereby man and woman can be educated. Literacy in itself is no education. In his opinion the aim of education is self-dependence, and education must enable every girl and boy to develop the ability to depend upon himself or herself. The ability to earn one’s livelihood is part of his independence or self-reliance.  As he himself puts it. “This education ought to be for them a kind of insurance against unemployment.”

Like Rousseau, Gandhiji also believes in child centre education. He said, “True education is that which draws out and stimulates the spiritual, intellectual and physical faculties of the children”.  Hence, the aim of education is the complete development of the child, its physical, mental and spiritual aspects. For him character formation was more important than literacy.

It is clear from the foregoing account that Gandhiji viewed education from a comprehensive or broadminded standpoint. Any education that develops only one aspect of a child’s personality can be dubbed narrow and one-sided. Education must aim at developing the child’s personality instead of limiting itself to providing the child with bits and pieces of information. Gandhiji states that education must make the individual to live and earn his daily bread to be the means of his sustenance. As he himself puts it, “ I value individual freedom, but you must not forget that man is essentially a social being. He was risen to his present status by learning to adjust his individuality to the requirements of social progress”.

In this way Gandhiji synthesized the individual and social aims of education. He did not   restrict education to the achievement of any one singly aim. Therefore, he assigned different aims to education at different times, so such so that something they looked mutually contradictory and even self-defeating. A closer examination of all theses statements of Gandhiji, however, shows that these aims of education are complementary to each other.

Gandhiji maintained that character formation and manual skill were equally important. He wanted the child to earn while he learns. As has been already pointed out, Gandhiji aimed at self-reliance through education. He visualized a craft-centered education. Explaining his scheme of Basic Education as an insurance against unemployment in India, Gandhiji said,  “The child at the age of 14, that is, after finishing a seven-year course should be discharged as an earning unit. Recommending this scheme of education in the report on national education the Kothari Commission declared, “We recommend that work-experience should be introduced as an integral part of all education general or vocational. We define work-experience as participation in productive work in school. In the home, in a workshop, on a farm, in a factory or in any other productive situation.”On the other hand, he also wanted the child to develop his character. The aim of education is the development of such a culture. Gandhiji’s plan of education laid stress upon all types of education-physical, mental, moral, aesthetic and religious.

Gandhiji aimed at the evolution of democratic ideals through education. His basic plan of education amply demonstrates this fact.  He aimed at an education for ideal citizenship. Education, according to him, should make children ideal members of a democratic society. The school, according to Gandhiji, is itself a small democratic society in which such democratic values are imparted to the children as wide outlook, tolerance and good neighborhood.  In the miniature society of the school the child learns the virtues of sympathy, service, love, brotherhood, equality and liberty. All knowledge is useless without a good character in his speeches to the students at various institutions. Gandhiji laid emphasis upon the moral and spiritual aims of education.  Emphasizing the moral aim of education, Gandhiji said, “The end of all knowledge must be the building up of character”. Character building is the moral ideal education. Western thinkers like Emerson, Ruskin, etc. Gandhiji very much admired the Indian Gurukula system of education and the ideal of Brahmacharya. In the words of Gandhiji, “Self-realization is in itself an all comprehensive ideal’.  This ideal includes other ideals of education. Gandhiji believed that the ultimate aim of education is spiritual. He also agreed that spiritual growth includes physical and mental, individual and social development. His educational philosophy is based upon ancient Indian idealism. While he did not restrict the scope of physical education his attention was mainly directed towards spiritual growth.

Education for Sarvodaya

Gandhiji was very much aware of the needs of the country and considered Basic Education as the only type of education, which may lead to success. His chief aim in planning for education in India was to fulfill the needs of the country. India is a country of villages. Most of the villagers in India cannot afford to pay for their children’s education. In addition to it they require their children’s assistance in their occupations. Therefore, Gandhiji planned for Basic Education, which may not be a burden upon the parents and through which the children may be able to earn to meet the expenses of education themselves, laid stress upon the importance of dignity of labour and manual skill. He was convinced that an education, which prepares the young men for white-collar jobs, could hardly be suitable for an agriculture community. It is hence that he so much emphasized the learning of craft in his plan of Basic Education. In spite of all this idealism Gandhiji’s approach everywhere was pragmatic. He was an experimenter in every field of life. Before devising his plan of Basic Education he tested everything before suggesting it for the education of the child. He postulated that the child should himself gather knowledge from the environment and put it in actual use in life. Like the pragmatists and instrumentalists Gandhiji stressed the importance of interest and activity and the need for variety in the subjects taught to the students.

Nai Talim

In order to achieve the above mentioned aims of Sarvodaya in India, Gandhiji presented his plan of Basic Education. He called it Nai Talim (New edcuaiton) because it sought to build up a new society in the country. He realized that what the country needs today is not so much higher education as the education of the masses. Therefore, he did not lay so much emphasis upon higher education.

The Basic Education sought to fulfill the needs of the students in a Sarvodaya society craft centred education with mother tongue as the medium. Literacy, according to him, is not an end but only mean of education. Education ultimately aims at the development of both mind and body and the capacity of earning one’s livelihood. The syllabi for the new education were framed in such a way so as to eliminate narrow nationalism and emphasize the ideal so Sarvodaya. The cost of education was brought down by compulsory manual labour and education should be made self-sufficient as far as possible.

Social Revolution

Pointing out the value of basic education for bringing about a silent social revolution in the country, Gandhiji said, “It will provide a healthy and moral basis of relationship between the city and the village and thus go a long way towards eradicating some of the worst evils of the present social insecurity and poisoned relationship between the classes. It will check the progressive decay of our villages and lay the foundation of a just social order in which there is no unnatural division between the,  ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’ and everybody  is assured of a living wage and the right of freedom.  And all this would be accomplished without the horrors of a bloody class war or a social capital expenditure such as would be involved in the mechanization of a vast continent like India. Nor would it entail a helpless dependence on foreign imported machinery or technical skill. Lastly, by obviating the necessity for highly specialized talent, it would place the destiny of the masses, as it were in their own hands.

Non –violent Education

As has been already pointed out, Gandhiji emphasized the principle of non-violence in every field of life. He considered non-violence as the characteristic human quality . He said, “Non-violence is the law of our species as violence is the law of brutes”. Even truth was subordinate to non-violence. This principle of non-violence, Gandhiji used in every aspect of education, so much so that his theory of education may be called non-violent education.

Wardha Scheme

In 1937, Gandhiji, evolved a scheme popularly known as the Wardha Scheme of Basic National Education. This Wardha scheme was based on same principles of education which were listed by Gandhiji in a paper in 1932 in Yervada  Jail. These postulates were as follows:

1. Boys and girls should be taught together.

2. Their time should be mostly spent on manual work under the supervision of the teacher. Manual work should be considered as part of education.

3.Work should be entrusted to each boy and girl after ascertaining his or her inclinations.

4. The child know the why and the wherefore of every process.

5. General knowledge should be imparted to the child as soon as it is able to understand things. This knowledge should precede literary education.

6. The hand of the child be trained to draw geometrical figures before he learn to write, that its good handwriting should be taught from the beginning.

7.      The child should learn to read before he is able to write, i.e., he should learn to recognize letters as if they were pictures and then draw their figures.

8. By this method and by word of mouth, the child should acquire much knowledge before he is eight years old.

9. Children should not be compelled to learn anything.

10.The child should be interested in whatever he learns.

11.The process of teaching should be conducted in a play-way, for play is an essential part of education.

12.All education should be imparted through the mother tongue of the child.

13.  Every Indian child should learn Hindi-Urdu, i.e., Hindustani as a national language before his literary training commences.

14.  The second stage of the child’s education begins when he is eleven and lasts up to sixteen.

15.  Manual labour has a place in education during this period also. The time for literary training should be increased according to need.

16. The child should learn some vocation as preparation for his future life.

17.He should acquire a general knowledge of World History, Geography, Botany, Astronomy, Arithmetic, Geometry and Algebra.

18.  A boy or a girl of sixteen years should know sewing and cooking.

19.  In the third stage which begins at sixteen and ends at twenty-five, a young man or woman should receive education according to his or her desires and circumstances.

20.The education commencing at the age of nine should be self-supporting. The student, while he is learning, should be engaged in such a vocation that its produce might meet the expense of the school.

21.  Production should, no doubt, begin right from the start. But it may be enough to meet the expenses during the initial years.

22.  Teachers cannot possibly have big salaries, but they must get enough to maintain themselves. A spirit of service should animate them. They must have a good character.

23.  Huge and costly buildings are not necessary for education.

24.  English can and should have a place in the syllabus only as a language. Just as Hindi is our lingua franca. English is a language of international intercourse and commerce.

On 23rd October 1937, a conference was organized at Wardha to finalize the basic system of education. This conference resolved that the children should be provided free education for seven years. Mother tongue should be the medium of education. Every student must be taught some basic craft. Production in the school. In order to implement these recommendations a committee was formed under the Chairmanship of Dr. Zakir Hussain. This committee highlighted the basic principles, aims and organization of Basic Education in its first report on 2nd December 1937. In its second report in 1940 this committee reviewed the curriculum of Basic Education. Indian National Congress accepted its recommendations in its Session at Haripura. After Zakir Hussian Committee, another committee was formed under the Chairmanship of B.G. Kher to review basic education.

Means of Education

The scheme of Basic Education clarifies the means of education according to M.K. Gandhi. The most important means of education in basic scheme was craft. About this means of education Gandhiji said, “The principal idea is to impart the whole education of body and the mind and the soul through the handicraft that is taught to the children. You have to draw out all that is in the child through teaching all the processes of the handicraft, and all your lessons in History, Geography, Arithmetic will be related to the craft.” It was pointed out that the following criteria should be followed in deciding about the basic craft:

1.      Craft fulfilling individual and social means.

2.      Craft based upon local requirements.

3.      Craft in tune with the local conditions.

4.      Craft favorable to the interest, aptitude and ability of the child.

5.      Craft leading to all-round development of personality’s

Another important element in the means of education in basic scheme was synthesis between the actual problems of life and education, between different subjects of the curriculum and finally between theoretical educational and practical ability. In order to implement the principle of synthesis in basic education it was insisted that the teachers and students should together formulate yearly projects divided into quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily projects.

Medium of Education

A staunch supporter of mother tongue as the medium of education, Gandhiji said, “ I must cling to my mother tongue as to my mother’s breast, in spite of its shortcomings. It alone can give me the life giving milk.” He was vehemently against English as the medium of education in this country. He said.  “To inflict English on children is to stunt their natural growth and perhaps to kill originality in them”. He maintained that our insistence on English is a remnant of our long slavery to the British. He maintained that the national language alone could be the vehicle of creating a common culture and rich literature. He was very much conversant with the language problem in India. He wanted to keep the county united particularly from the point of view of language.  Therefore, he devised a common national language Hindustani that may be written in both Devanagari and Persian script. According to him there is no difference in Hindi and Urdu.

Characteristics of Gandhian Educational Plan

M.K. Gandhi viewed the process of education from many different angles and saw that it must achieve something more than one objective. That is why he ascribed to it many different aims. At times a superficial study of these aims may give the impression that they are mutually contradictory or self-defeating, but a deeper examination will show that they complement each other. Gandhiji’s educational plan exhibits all the major qualities found in the Western educational patterns. For this reason, the following points must be kept in mind in attempting an evaluation of his plan:

1.      Naturalism : Gandhiji’s educational philosophy gives due recognition to biological naturalism because it lays stress on man’s complete development. He laid more stress on the child’s environment than on books. He wanted to give an indigenous touch to education, and make it capable of achieving independence and naturalness. But, at the same time, he did not neglect discipline. His education is centered on the child, not around textbooks.

2.      Idealism : On the one hand one finds a strong element of realism in Gandhiji’s philosophy of education but on the other it also exhibits some signs of idealism. There is no denying that he was always an idealist because he always was a religious individual. He felt that the aim of man’s life was realization of God, and that is why he stressed the importance of moral and religious education. He wanted to use education as a means of developing a harmonized personality in the child. Like Pestelozzi, he wanted to make the child the center of educational progress and like Herbart he felt that the aim of education was building up a moral character. He attached the greatest importance to the child’s interests and inclinations.

3.      Pragmatism : Despite his inclination towards idealism, Gandhiji always attended to the practical aspect of education. That is why he entitled his autobiography ‘My Experiments with Truth’.  In keeping with the pragmatic tradition he also believed that the child should gather for himself all the knowledge from the environment and select from it that which he should put to use in later life. Like Dewey, Gandhiji also felt that that child should learn through actual work besides, he also agreed with Dewey that education should seek to establish the democratic values in life. In short, he wanted to relate  education to life as far as possible.

4.      Educational system is based on psychological facts : Although Gandhiji was not a professional psychologist, he had gained remarkable insight into human psychology through his acute observation of life around him. He felt that education should aim at arousing curiosity and providing motivation to the child so that he should himself achieve his own physical, mental and spiritual development. He was very much in favour of the students indulging in games and sports and gymnastic activity, because he felt that physical development is an essential prerequisite of mental development. He also felt that education should not be allowed to become mechanical but should be acquired through play.

5.      Importance of impressions and actions : Gandhiji’s opinion that impressions of early childhood have a tremendous impact on later development is in agreement with the modern psychologists. Most educationists agree that learning through doing helps in the complete development of the child and that this also enables him to earn his livelihood later  in life.

6.      Sociological importance of Gandhiji’s plan : Gandhiji’s plan of education is not only psychologically valid but it has sociological significance also. While thinking of his plan of education, Gandhiji was not concerned with one or two individuals, but with the vast multitude of illiterate men and women who make up the country’s population. He advocated discipline as an essential part of freedom and liberty. He wanted that education should help the individual to become an ideal democratic citizen. He stressed the importance of social service, labour, agriculture, handicrafts, hygiene, collective living, etc. and pointed out that they were more important than any curriculum. Sarvodaya was as much his guiding principle in education as it the field of politics. This concept of a Sarvodaya Society was based on traditional Indian and modern democratic values.

7.      Education conforming to the country’s needs : Whatever the arguments one may advance against Gandhiji’s plan of education one cannot question his sincerity, because it is only too obvious that in presenting it, he was perfectly aware of the needs of his countrymen. He considered this the only kind of education, which can be successful in this country. Most villagers cannot afford to pay for their children’s education and in addition most of them require their children’s assistance in their own occupations. Ganhiji wanted the students to be engaged in gainful work the product of which could be sold to pay for his education.

8.      Teaching Methods : The teaching methods in the Gandhian scheme of education can be deduced from his Basic Education. As has been pointed out, Gandhiji pleaded that the child should be educated through a basic craft. He should first be tought a basic craft from among the different types of it and other subjects such as Arithmetic, Language, Geography, History and Civics should be taught in association with the basic craft. In his educational institutions children were busy in craft activities for hours.

            As has already been pointed out an important characteristic of the teaching method in Gandhian scheme was synthesis. Projects were drawn for the years, quarter, month, week and the day. 

POINTS TO REMEMBER

Audio

·  Education for sarvodaya.

·  Nai Talim.

·  Social revolution.

·  Non-violent education.

·  Wardha scheme.

·  Means of education.

·  Medium of education.

·  Characteristics of Gandhian educational plan.


9 LESSON 9 EDUCATION AND SIGNIFICANCE OF LIFE

LESSON 9 

EDUCATION AND SIGNIFICANCE OF LIFE

J. Krishnamurti

-Satish Kumar

-Sonia Gandhi

Juddu Krishnamurti was an eloquent speaker and a great thinker and philosopher. He lectured in England, Holland, Australia, North and South America. People in India and abroad listened to him with great attention. He was deeply interested in education and in schools. He founded eight schools in different parts of the world. His views on education are contained in his book Education and the Significance of Life (1973).

Krishnamurti’s Message

            For the perturbed and wayward humanity, his message was “First understand the purpose of your life – the purpose of this individual existence. Understand what it is towards which you are thriving. Then utilize every emotion, every thought to strengthen you.” He observed that the man who can split the nation, but has no love in his heart, becomes a monster. The exclusive variation of technique has produced scientists, mathematicians and engineers, who have no understanding of the process of life. Emphasis on efficiency without understanding what life means, brings about misery and chaos in the world.

            According to him, “The highest function of education is to bring about an integrated individual who is capable of dealing with life as a whole.” Education according to him was a transformation of human mind and creation of new culture. Education must free the mind and spirit of children. He remarked, “Without a change of heart, without goodwill, without the inward transformation which is born of awareness, there can be no peace, no happiness for mankind.” “Education should encourage self-observation and the experiencing of life as a whole, not ‘me’ and ‘mine’ but to go above and beyond to discover the real.” That was why education should be concerned with the totality of life and not with the immediate responses to immediate challenges. The task of education was showing the way to wisdom and to truth. Truth was within oneself. To find the truth, man must be free from all bondages. The function of education is to help each pupil to discover inner psychological resources and develop his own individual strengths, as well as to realize his weaknesses, without imposing upon him the teachers’ notion what he should be.

The Educator’s Role

            The teacher himself should be a properly integrated human being. The teacher has to be careful, thoughtful and affectionate in the creation of the right environment for the development of understanding to enable the child to deal intelligently with human problem. In order to achieve all this, the educator needs to understand himself. In order to deal with children, great deal of patience and understanding are needed. For a true teacher, teaching was not a technique but a way of life.

 Responsibility of the Parents

            Krishnamurti held the view that education was a dual responsibility of the parents and the teachers. He said, “The problem is not the child but the parent and the teacher, the problems is the educated and the educator.”

            “Conventional education makes independent thinking extremely difficult. Conformity leads to mediocrity. To be different from the group or to resist environment is not easy and is often risky as long as we worship success. The urge to be successful, which is the pursuit of reward whether in the material or in the so-called spiritual sphere, the search for inward or outward security, the desire for comfort brings discontent, end to spontaneity and breeds fear; and fear block the intelligent understanding of life.”

            “In seeking comfort, we generally find quiet corner in life where there is a minimum of conflict, and then we are afraid to step out of that seclusion. This fear of life, this fear of struggle and of new experience, kills in us the spirit of adventure. Our whole upbringing and neighbour afraid to think contrary to the established pattern of society, false respect of authority and tradition leaves no real spirit of discontent, of revolt.”

            Krishnamurthi says that independent thinking in structured educational set up is not an easy task because going against the wave may not bring success in vocational or spiritual life. Out of fear of becoming unsuccessful, hence, prevent a person from independent thinking and taking initiatives in any walk of life. Thus, true experience and adventure of life do not find its meaning due to established pattern of life.

            “Revolt is of two kinds: there is violent revolt, which is mere reaction, without understanding, against the existing order; there is the deep psychological revolt of intelligence. What generally happens is that we break away from one group or set of ideals and join another group, take up other ideals, thus creating a new pattern of thought against which we would again have to revolt. Reaction only breeds opposition, and reform needs further reform. But there is an intelligent revolt which is not reaction, and which comes with self-knowledge through the awareness of one’s own thought and feeling. It is only when we face experience as it comes and do not avoid disturbance that we keep intelligence highly awakened; and intelligence highly awakened is intuition, which is the only true guide in life”.

            Krishnamurthi believes in filtering one’s own knowledge by introspection and developing insight into one’s own knowledge and feelings. The analysis of one’s own knowledge or reaction to one’s own understanding sharpens the experiences one gets in his/her life. Merely shifting from one ideology to another due to reaction or revolt does not bring actual reform and highly awakened intelligence.

            Now, what is the significance of life? What are we living and struggling for? If we are being educated merely to get a better job, to be more efficient, to have wider domination over others, then our lives will be shallow and empty. If we are being educated only to be scientists, be scholars wedded to books, or specialists addicted to knowledge, then we shall be contributing to the destruction and misery of the world.

            Though there is a higher and wider significance to life. Of what value is our education, if we never discover it? We may be highly educated, but if we are without deep integration of thought and feeling, our lives are  incomplete, contradictory and torn with many fears; and as long as education does not cultivate an integrated outlook on life, it has very little significance.

            The aims of education according to krishnamurthy are to understand the life and constant searching of the mystery of life. The materialistic achievements can only be a source and not the aim of life. He says that a person looses his/her beauty when he/she grows up and in the wake of growing and developing a person becomes materialistic, greedy, opportunist and selfish.  The role of education should not be making people materialistic.   

            In our present civilization education has very little meaning, except in learning a particular technique or profession. Instead of awakening the integrated intelligence of the individual, education is encouraging him to conform to a pattern and so is hindering his comprehension of himself as a total process. To attempt to solve the many problems of existence at their respective levels, separated as they are into various categories, indicates an utter lack of comprehension. Education should bring about the integration of these separate entities – for without integration, life becomes a series of conflicts and sorrows. Of what value is it to be trained as lawyers if we perpetuate litigation? Of what value us knowledge if we continue in our confusion? What significance has technical and industrial capacity if we use it to destroy one another? What is the point of our existence if it leads to violence and utter misery?

            Education does not mean only acquiring the knowledge of subjects but to develop complete and responsible human being. By complete education he means love and compassions, which can transform the present situation in its totality.

            We must distinguish between the personal and the individual. The personal in the accidental; and by the accidental I mean the circumstances of birth, the environment in which we happen to have been brought up, with its nationalism, superstitions, class distinctions and prejudices. The present system of education is based on the personal, the accidental, and the momentary; which leads to perversion of thought and the inculcation of self-defensive fears.

            All of us have been trained by education and environment to seek personal gain and security, and to fight for ourselves. Education is not merely a matter of training the mind. Training makes for efficiency, but is does not bring about completeness. That is why, to find out what is right education, we will have to inquire into the whole significance of living.

            To most of us, the meaning of life as a whole is not of primary importance, and our education emphasizes secondary values, merely making us proficient in some branch of knowledge. Though knowledge and efficiency are necessary, to lay chief emphasis on them only leads to conflict and confusion.

            There is an efficiency inspired by love which goes far beyond and on much greater than the efficiency of ambition; and without love, which brings an integrated understanding of life, efficiency breeds ruthlessness.  Our present education is geared to industrialization and war, its principal aim being to develop efficiency; and we are caught in this machine or ruthless competition and mutual destruction. If education leads to war, if it teaches us to destroy or be destroyed, has it not utterly failed?

            To bring about right education, we must obviously understand the meaning of life as a whole, and for that we have to be able to think, not consistently, but directly and truly. To understand life is to understand ourselves and that is both the beginning and the end of education.

            Education is not merely acquiring knowledge, gathering and correlating facts; it is to see the significance of life as a whole. But the whole cannot be approached through the part, which is what government, organized religions and authoritarian parties are attempting to do.

            The function of education is to create human beings who are integrated and therefore intelligent. Intelligence is not mere information; it is not derived from books, nor does it consist of clever self-defensive responses and aggressive assertions. One who has not studied may be more intelligent that the learned. Intelligence is the capacity to perceive the essential and to awaken this capacity, in oneself and in others, is education.

            Krishnamurthy rejects any type of pressure and pre-assumptions. He considers that pre-assumptions stop a person from learning because the mind of the person is already filled with particular ideas, which is not easy to erase. He takes learning as a process of thinking and also calls it observation by which a person gains experiences. He distinguishes between information, knowledge and intelligence.

            Education should help us to discover lasting values so that we do not merely cling to formulas or repeat slogans; it should help us to break down our national and social barriers, instead of emphasizing them for they breed antagonism between human beings.

            The purpose of education is not to produce mere scholars, technicians, and job hunters, but integrated men and women who are free of fear; for only between such human beings can there be enduring peace.

            Education should not encourage the individual to conform to society or to be negatively harmonious with it, but help him to discover the true values, which come with unbiased investigation and self-awareness. When there is no self-knowledge, self-expression becomes self-assertion, with all its aggressive and ambitious conflicts. Education, in the true sense, is the understanding of oneself, for it is within each one of us that the whole of existence is gathered.

            From the above excerpts of Krishnamurthy, it is evident that he believes education as a continuous learning of the activities of life. He takes learning as a pure observation, which is not only limited to external world but also introspection within. In fact he utilizes learning synonimically with self-analysis and criticism of one’s own ideas without being biased. Because learning is directly related to independence and a person can not introspect one self without being free from external control, therefore the first and foremost condition for learning is determination and freedom from external conditioning. He questions that if a person lives with preconceived ideas and ideology then what knowledge is he searching for?

            What we now call education is a matter of accumulating information and knowledge from books, which anyone can do who can read conflict and confusion result from our own wrong relationship with relationship and alter it, mere learning, the gathering of facts and the acquiring of various skills, can only lead us to engulfing chaos and destruction.

            As society is now organized, we send our children to school to learn some technique by which they can eventually earn a livelihood. We want to make the child first and foremost a specialist, hoping thus to give him a secure economic position. But does the cultivation of a technique enable us to understand ourselves? 

            Will technique give us the capacity to understand life? Surely, technique is secondary; and if technique is the only thing we are striving for, obviously denying what is by far the greater part of life.

            Life is pain, joy, beauty, ugliness, love, and when we understand it as a whole, at every level, that understanding creates its own technique. But the contrary is not true; technique can never bring about creative understanding.

            Present-day education is a complete failure because it has over-emphasized technique. In over-emphasizing technique we destroy man. The exclusive cultivation of technique has produced scientist, mathematicians, bridge builders, space conquerors; but do they understand the total process of life? Can any specialist experience life as a whole? Only when he ceases to be a specialist. Technological progress does solve certain kinds of problems for some people at one level, but it introduces wider and deeper issues too. Technical knowledge, however necessary, will in no way resolve our inner, psychological pressures and conflicts; and it is because we have acquired technical knowledge without understanding the total process of life that technology has become a means of destroying ourselves.

            Criticizing education given by schools in a formal setup, which is evident from the above-mentioned paragraph, Krishnamurthy says that schooling has diverted from the meaning of education where they prepare the children to learn particular techniques to meet particular aims of life. In achieving particular aims the true meaning of education is lost somewhere because the students after completing formal education lost themselves in the materialistic world to fulfill their materialistic wants. Hence the meaning of life itself gets lost which cannot be considered education. The current education has divided the person into parts and hence life has become scattered where as Krishnamurthy advocates integrated and associated life through education.

            Some form of technical training seems necessary; but when we have become engineers, physicians, accountants- then what? Is the practice of a profession the fulfillment of life? Apparently with most of us it is. Our various professions may keep us busy for the greater duce and are so entranced with are causing destruction and misery. Our attitudes and values make of things and occupations the instrument of envy, bitterness and hate.

            Without understanding ourselves, mere occupation leads to frustration, with its inevitable escapes through all kinds of mischievous activities. Technique without understanding leads to enmity and ruthlessness, our technical progress is fantastic, but it has only increased our powers of destroying one another, and there is starvation and misery in every land. We are not peaceful and happy people.

            The accumulation of facts and the development of capacity, which we call education, have deprived us of the fullness of integrated life and action. It is because we do not understand the total process of life that we cling to capacity and efficiency, it can be understood only through action and experience.

            “The right kind of education, it should help man to experience the integrated process of life. The right kind of education is not concerned with any ideology, however much it may promise a future Utopia: it is not based on any system, however carefully thought out; nor is it a means of conditioning the individual in some special manner. Education in the true sense is helping the individual to be mature and free, to flower greatly in love and goodness. That is what we should be interested in and not in shaping the child according to some idealistic pattern.

            Only love can bring about the understanding of another. Where there is love there is instantaneous communion with the other, on the same level and at the same time. But governments want efficient technicians, not human beings, because human beings become dangerous to governments and to organized religions as well. That is why governments and religious organizations seek to control education.

            The highest function of education is to bring about an integrated individual who is capable of dealing with life as a whole. Another function of education is to create new values. Merely to implant existing values in the mind of the child, Let us not think in terms of principles and ideals, but be concerned with things as they are; for it is the consideration of what is that awakens intelligence, and the intelligence of the educator is far more important than his knowledge of a new method of education.

             The right kind of education consists in understanding the child as he is without imposing upon him an ideal of what we think he should be. If the teacher is of the right kind, he will not depend on a method, but will study each individual pupil.

            In all Krishnamurthy speaks education is a realization of love, passion and humanity. School education Krishnamurthy criticizes but says that it is necessary for development and achievement of particular aspect of life and not life as a whole. Human out-look can only be developed through education when the basis of education should tend to understand the life in its entirely. 


10 Questions


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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

1. Define Education.

2. Explain the broader and narrower meaning of education.

3. What do you mean by analytical meaning of education?

4. Describe the nature of the Aims of Education.

5. How has the aims of education evolved? Discuss.

6. Enlist and explain different aims of education.

7. Discuss the process of education.

 

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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

  

Questions

1.   Explain the meaning and nature of educational philosophy?

2. ‘Without Philosophy education can not take its birth’. In the light of the above statement discuss philosophy as a base of education?

3.   Explain the psychological basis of education?

4.  Discuss the sociological basis of education?

 

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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

1. Explain various schemes, alternatives and innovation of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.

2.      Describe various provisions of Government of India towards the education of Scheduled caste and Scheduled Tribes.

3.      Discuss the role of Central and State Government in the development of education.

4.      Write Short notes on the followings:

  i)     Minority education

 ii)     Technical education

iii)     Integrated education for disabled

iv)          Quality improvement in school

 

 

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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

 

1.         Explain the origin of Philosophical thought in education.

2.         Discuss the development of Philosophical thought after 14th century.

3.         What do you mean by empiricism and rationalism in early modern philosophy?

4.         Discuss responses to enlightenment ideas during 19th century.

 

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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

1.         Explain various principles of Montessori system.

2.         Discuss the role of exercise in education.

3.         What are the various educational implications of Montessori method?

4.         Critically evaluate the Montessori method of teaching.

 

 

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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

 

1.         Explain aims of education according to John Dewey.

2.         Write down Dewey’s view point for curriculum and methods of teaching.

3.         Discuss the role of educators and discipline in Dewey’s system of education.

4.         What is the impact of Dewey’s thought on modern system of education?

 

 

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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

 

1.         Discuss Aurobindo’s system of education.

2.         What are the aims of education according to Aurobindo?

3.         What type of educational model has been proposed by Aurobindo?.

4.         Explain the ‘true education’ according to Aurobindo?

5.         Explain the components of curriculum proposed by Aurobindo.


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ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

 

1.         Discuss the ideas of education as reflect from R.N. Tagore’s ‘My School’.

2.         Explain Tagore’s philosophy of education on Indian education.

3.         What are the principles of self education according to R.N. Tagore?

4.          Describe the aims of education as proposed by R.N. Tagore.


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 University of Delhi,

 5, Cavalry Lane,                                             Pin code ................................................

 Delhi-110007 (India)

 

ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions

 

1.      Discuss in detail Mahatma Gandhi’s concept of education.

2.      What do you mean by wardha scheme? What are its main postulates?

3.      Explain the means of education according to M.K. Gandhi.

4.      What are the main characteristics of Gandhian educational plan?


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SRS – 5 (f)

 

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 Delhi-110007 (India)

 

ACADEMIC SESSION 2007-2008

 

 Questions 

1.   What message does Krishnamurthy wants to impart through education?

2.      What role Krishnamurthy assigned to the educators?

3.      Discuss krishnamurthy’s concept of education.

4.     What responsibility does parents contain for educating children?