Academic journal article International Education Studies

Liberal Humanism and Its Effect on the Various Contemporary Educational Approaches

Academic journal article International Education Studies

Liberal Humanism and Its Effect on the Various Contemporary Educational Approaches

Article excerpt


Liberalism is one of the main western doctrines which have originated from the ideologies of ancient Greece. The concept of humanism has been under the influence of liberal ideas in different political, social, economic and especially educational field. Since the educational field concerned with liberal ideologies, the study of different factors affecting liberal humanism helps distinguishing the concepts explained by each approaches and their similarities and differences. In this qualitative research, it has been endeavored to determine each of these aspects and factors and their effect on various contemporary educational approaches. The results indicate that some of the main factors of liberal humanism have not been considered and in the cases that they have been considered, the understandings of common subjects are different. Each of these approaches tends to study and define the aspects and principles from a certain point of view.

Keywords: liberalism, humanism, education, contemporary educational approaches

1. Introduction

1.1 The Concept of Liberalism

Liberalism is known as a combination of methods, thoughts, and policies with the aim of providing individuals with the upmost freedom and liberation possible (Bring, 2008). Liberalism is a concept based on individualism, therefore, benefits in this accordance, it is notable to mention that restraining the liberations is in no way acceptable, since all of the problems are caused by such limitations caused by the government or any other educational center which threaten individuals and their liberation. These limitations are the regulations set, which limit one's liberties, especially in the field of economics which eventually leads to corruption (Pring, 2009).

In accordance with liberalism, it can be stated that in spite of its historical flexibility, it has remained as an intact approach throughout time; an approach which main compartments are comprehendible without much difficulty. For this reason, we are able to consider John Locke, Emanuel Cunt, John Stewart Mill, Hebret Spencer, John MinardKinz, Fredrich Von Hyke, and John Riles Robert Nazik as different branches of one common subject. According to the American Scientific Progression Association, liberal education informs small letter individuals or those who have dogmatic ideologies of the various other existing ideologies and nurtures the results of such thoughts in the actual natural world and in their conscience and subconscious (Project on liberal education and the sciences, 1990). Liberal education, in fact, combines traditional education with literal, humane educations and ethical values. Such teachings help individuals to face their problems in life with more ease

Liberal education provides a great opportunity for the members of a society to become literate and thoughtful citizens. Herst (1965) explained that the basis of liberal education is obtaining knowledge and science. He insists that there is a logical relevance between the concepts of logic and knowledge. Knowledge acquisition is necessary for the growth and development of the mind Herst (1965). In his opinion, the most important common factors in liberalism are: 1) Liberty: the right to live, liberty of thought, idea, logic, opinion, religion, expression, media, gatherings and that of economic liberties; 2) The dominance of individuals in relevance with their society; 3) Equality in formation and civil rights or equality in rights; 4) Tolerance of adversaries or simplification; 5) The dominance of regulations or legalism; 6) Limited or conditional government; 7) The dominance of logic and science as the basis of performance; and 8) Mundane progression based on technology.

Of the other important principles of liberalism, one may point to privacy in people's lives, secularism and democracy, the basis of all being man himself. In Figure 1, the relationship of the liberal humanization has been shown:

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