Relationship Between Philosophy and Education

Relationship Between Philosophy and Education

The Properties of Relevance Between
Philosophy and Education

BY KENNETH ROBERT CONKLIN

Reprinted from Educational Theory — Vol. 18, No. 4, Fall 1968


The Properties of Relevance Between
Philosophy and Education

BY KENNETH ROBERT CONKLIN

I. INTRODUCTION
WHAT IS THE NATURE OF THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PHILOSOPHY AND
EDUCATION? What are the rules for making legitimate connections between
the two? Does a given philosophical theory have consequences as prescriptions
for education? If so, what are the correct ways of determining them?
Does a given educational theory or practice have philosophical presuppositions?
If so, what are the correct ways of determining them? Can the same
position in education be supported by conflicting philosophies? Can the same
philosophy be used to generate conflicting prescriptions for education? Can
philosophical theory adequately guide educational practice when action must
be taken to deal with a novel problem whose urgency or complexity leaves
insufficient time for adequate reflection? Can philosophical theory guide the
unforeseen moment-to-moment activities of the educational practitioner
(teacher, administrator) even though no conscious thought is given to philosophy?
By what mechanisms, if any, does theoretical training affect practical
conduct?
All of these questions could be answered if the properties of relevance
between philosophy and education were known, A characterization of the
relevance between philosophy and education would provide a valuable tool
whereby research in philosophy could be made useful in education, and
educational theories and practices could be more readily and more adequately
guided and criticized philosophically. Standards might be developed for
judging technical writing in philosophy of education, and teacher training
might be improved.

II. RELEVANCE
The questions listed in the opening paragraph are elaborations of a single...
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