Essay - Social Theories of Education and Learning: Functionalism, Interpretivism, & Postmodernism...

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Social Theories of Education and Learning: functionalism, interpretivism, & postmodernism

No social theory can totally encompass the complexities of human behavior, particularly, a teacher might add, the ***** of the different student personalities that make up a classroom's social environment! But while ***** social theories of functionalism, interpretivism, and postmodernism all have a variety ***** strengths and weaknesses in providing guidance for the ***** theorist as well ***** the teacher in the field, the *****ory ***** is most useful for contemporary educators to embrace in today's changing multicultural and multifaceted social ***** is that of the postmodern paradigm.

When comparing the relative strengths of functionalism, *****, and postmodernism, one must begin with functionalism, as it remains the oldest, and still the dominant, theoretical perspective in social theory. "Underlying functionalist theory is the fundamental metaphor" of society as living organism." Society is segmented into "several parts and organs, gro*****ed ***** organized into a system," and individuals function as "various parts and organs" ***** sustain ***** organism and keep its life processes in a state of motion. (McClellan, 2000, "Functionalism") It has the advantage ***** attempting to be rigorously objective in ***** application of the scientific method to individual and *****, like a doc*****r viewing a body. Its stress on societal values may be helpful for a ***** as *****alists "look at the ways in which the ***** parts ***** society," like organs of the body, "contribute to bringing about ***** order" in an effort ***** cre*****e a society based on a common value system in the classroom. (Hewett, 2006) In contrast, "*****terpretivism" also attempts to create a community of common *****, *****lthough it "rests upon idealism. Idealism holds the view that ***** world is the creation of mind," not ***** objective truth. But this means that ***** educator ***** shape the world ***** the ***** by adjusting his or her subjective perspective of his or her students in creating a class community. The teacher ***** ***** are both able to change, in the ***** interpretivism model ***** ***** **********. ("Interpretivism," *****) ***** it should be added that even *****'s stress upon the fact that there is no one, unified perspective in terms of see*****g the w*****ld is helpful in ***** a common community of toler*****nce of individual differences. In fact, an educator attempting to teach a ***** classroom may w*****h for a *****ory that attempts to acknowledge the different backgrounds students come from as well as their common connection in the society of a classroom.

True, a functionalist educator might stress he or she has the ***** ***** *****ly understanding how his or her student's social environment may negatively or positively impact their education, and thus gain a more detached perspective as to ***** to circumvent the fac*****rs that arise from poverty or peer ***** p*****nt pressure. Interpretivism, in *****, would reject ***** idea ***** sociology and education should strive to emulate natural science methods of pure objectivity ***** argue that these functionalist ***** are ***** applicable ***** the study of


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