Analytic Philosophy

Philosophy of Education
Nel Noddings
Chapter 3
Analytic Philosophy
What is Philosophy?
“…leaves everything as it is. That is, philosophy does not
change the world; it just makes the world clearer.”
-Ludwig Wittgenstein
Analytic Philosophy
What is Analysis?
A general and broad definition of analysis is:
Analysis is the process of breaking a complex topic or substance
into smaller parts to gain a better understanding of it.
≠ Interpretation
Analytic Philosophy
Analytic Philosophy
Traditional Philosophy
Analytic philosophy works toward neutrality; leaving out the
values and beliefs of the philosopher.
Traditional philosophy allows the philosopher to interject his
own ideas, opinions, and interpretations.
Many philosophers reject analytic philosophy claiming that
personal values cannot be set aside as they engage in analysis
Analytic Philosophy
Nel Noddings explains:
One task of analytic philosophy is to take apart
concepts, words, and sentences to figure out what each part
means and what role it plays in the whole.
Bertrand Russell
Analytic philosophy concentrates on the
connection between language and reality.
Analytic Philosophy
The focus of Noddings Chapter 3
pertains to the philosophical analysis
of teaching and its relation to learning.
What does the word
Please click the following link:
Pay specific attention to the note paper shown at :30. It is a list of what
learning is and what it is not. The philosophical comments are by author
and philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti 2:50
Analytic Philosophy
We will look at the following philosophers’
analyses of teaching:
MacMillian & Garrison
Analytic Philosophy
John Dewey was not solely an analytic or traditional philosopher.
As described by Nel Noddings,
John Dewey…
- Challenged the notion that 'teaching implies learning'
- Believed the teacher should be viewed as
a guide and director
- Believed the initiative to learn must
lie with the learner
Analytic Philosophy
John Dewey
“Teaching may be compared to selling commodities. No
one can sell unless someone buys. We should ridicule a
merchant who said that he had sold a great many goods
although no one had bought any.”
Analytic Philosophy
John Dewey
“But perhaps there are teachers who think they have done a
good day’s teaching irrespective of what people have
learned. There is the same exact equation between teaching
and learning that there is between selling and buying.”
Analytic Philosophy
Israel Scheffler sought to…
- defend teachers from accusations of educational
shortcomings as a result of poor teaching,
when compared to Soviet counterparts
- demonstrate the difference of 'human teachers' from
that of 'teaching machines' and technicians who
merely follow scripts in the classroom
Analytic Philosophy
Israel Scheffler’s 3 criteria that characterize teaching:
1. The teacher intends to bring about learning.
The teacher wants her students to learn a new concept.
2. The strategies chosen by the teacher must be “not
unreasonably thought to be likely to achieve the
learning aimed at”.
It would be inappropriate to teach a child to write number symbols and
then expect him to be able to know how to add.
3. What the teacher does must fall under certain
restrictions of manner.
The teacher must teach within the relationship to the student. Teaching
machines and scripted programs, Schiffler suggests, are not teaching.
Analytic Philosophy
Paul Komisar
- sought to protect students from an overly narrow
conception of learning
- opposed teaching that expected a designated
answer for a question
-brought about a discussion of the concept of
learning: "learning" vs. real
learning/developmental learning
Analytic Philosophy
Paul Komisar
“It is not some kind of learning, but some form of
awareness, which is the intended upshot in the teaching
Is the above considered teaching or discovering?
Philosophers debate/analyze the word “discovery”. Is
A way of learning? A method of teaching?
A form of teaching characterized by a certain outcome?
Analytic Philosophy
B. Othanel Smith added to the conversation with this scenario:
If a teacher is presenting a lesson over a television
and the power fails for the viewing students,
is the teacher still teaching?
Teaching is relational.
Both the teacher and the learner contribute.
One relies on the other.
Analytic Philosophy
C.J.B MacMillian & James Garrison
“Erotetic” Concept of Teaching
(Erotetic means: pertaining to questioning)
“To teach someone something is to answer that person’s
questions about some subject matter.”
This is not to suggest that teachers merely answer students’ questions.
Teachers answer the questions that students ought to ask. A teacher does this
by creating lesson plans that anticipate what the student might want to learn at
their developmental stage.
Analytic Philosophy
C.J.B MacMillian & James Garrison cont…
A teacher needs to let the students know that she cares
about them and their development as people in order to
help them find their motivation to learn.
Analytic Philosophy
Susan Laird
Laird suggests that real teaching comes from considering
the real-life human situations children are experiencing
and helping children work through those issues.
Teaching is not just instructing students on solving
intellectual questions anticipated in a lesson plan.
Analytic Philosophy
Additional resource reflective of the teacher/learner relationship:
The following video was made using a text to voice program. The
cadence is a little strange and the animation is basic. Please listen
to the message; it is definitely something to think about. 4:47
John Milton Gregory's Seven Laws for Teaching
Analytic Philosophy
Consider your teaching:
Do you know and consider the intellectual predicaments of your
students prior to a lesson? (anticipate their questions)
Do you know and consider the human predicaments your students
are facing?
Do you allow students to be involved in constructing their own
learning objectives?
Do teachers have an obligation to encourage "why" questions?
Are there times when such questions should be discouraged?
Analytic Philosophy
How will you decide if you have had a
“good day’s teaching”?

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