ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Epistemic Tensions and Educational Reform

Idea of Education

Educational systems, implicitly or explicitly, reflect a philosophical vision. Interpretations of the self, mind and world based on such vision influence socio-cultural norms and relations. It also leads to theorisation, which when formulated into principles of action to understand the world become ideologies. All educational systems carry the germ of some ideology. This paper suggests that there are two broad epistemological premises that determine the structure of knowledge, meaning and truth. One that believes that reality is material and governed by laws that the human mind can understand; the other premise asserts the inherent creative principle of the human mind and that knowledge itself is in part constructed of sensory data and perception. Since it is never completely possible to move behind an epistemic frame, reform initiatives, especially in education, should question whether processes of reform will really ensure transformation of relationships on more equal terms or will they reinforce dependency and hierarchy.

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