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Turtle Hypodermic of Sickenpods

Turtle Hypodermic of Sickenpods: Liberal Studies in the Corporate Age

Copyright Date: 2000
Pages: 200
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  • Book Info
    Turtle Hypodermic of Sickenpods
    Book Description:

    A dominant theme that pervades this collection is the status of "theory" in the educational system. Solway claims that nothing of genuine and productive import comes out of theories. The manifold problems that bedevil the academy cannot be solved, or even rectified, by the usual onslaught of dogmas, reforms, and pseudo-revolutionary postulates that are produced in the misguided attempt to find the single, perfect, pedagogical system. Instead, we must embark on a stringent re-examination of the principles and assumptions on which our culture itself is predicated as reflected in contemporary practice.

    eISBN: 978-0-7735-6878-5
    Subjects: Education

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. Preface
    (pp. xi-2)
  5. Introduction: Theory, Reform, Administration, Technology, or The Four Horsemen of the Educational Apocalypse
    (pp. 3-12)

    It will become evident to the reader that one of the dominant themes that pervades this collection, explicitly in some chapters, implicitly in others, involves the status of “theory” in the current educational climate. I should mention at the outset that I am not very keen on pedagogical theory and in fact tend to regard such speculative excess as a form of evasion or deception or self-delusion, what Francis Bacon stigmatized as an Idol of the Theatre (referring to the fact that all systems and dogmas come with built-in fallacies).¹ In education, theory makes nothing happen, or nothing, that is,...

  6. 1 Outcomes Based Education, or Cloning the Xenopus Generation
    (pp. 13-47)

    Most of us know that there is something terribly wrong with education today and many of us have rushed into the breach to propose one or another “solution” to the crisis which nevertheless stubbornly refuses to go away. I believe, however, that we are obliged tounderstandthe crisis, to isolate its intrinsic features as well as to ascertain the wider context of which it is both a part and a symptom. Otherwise we find ourselves, as is now the case, facing a multitude of competing schemes and paradigms that clutter the educational marketplace with increasing clangour and futility. Some...

  7. 2 The Program Approach, or On the Road to Bartertown
    (pp. 48-87)

    It seems that scarcely a semester goes by without the announcement, or is it annunciation, of some new and glorious educational reform which will infallibly redeem a deteriorating academic situation and restore conviction, hope, and effectiveness to teachers who have long ago stopped believing in an educational “system” that must aim up to reach bottom. Somehow we never pause to ask why the new reform is necessary in the first place, considering that the previous reform promised exactly the same putative benefits and results, as did the one before and the one before that - the Greek kalends of the...

  8. 3 Phaedrian Elegies, or Bazooka Joe’s Pencil
    (pp. 88-113)

    A few weeks ago on my morning walk, as I was thinking about this chapter and wondering how and at what point to begin, I happened to cross the neighbouring school yard where among the customary litter of school supplies - discarded pop bottles and candy wrappers - I chanced upon a soggy bubble-gum cartoon-strip chronicling the adventures of a certain Bazooka Joe. The individual in question comforts a friend, who has inadvisedly swallowed a pen, and at the same time confers on the telephone with the doctor who promises to come right over. Meanwhile, the doctor asks, how is...

  9. Epilogue
    (pp. 114-136)

    As this book prepares to go to press, new documents that illustrate the Program-related concepts I have been at some pains to deconstruct are now circulating among the community colleges in Quebec. The documents propose a new training program for college teachers, one that discounts both subject knowledge and pedagogical ardour while promoting a mechanical, rigorously sequenced delivery protocol mandating specific courses of behaviour for notice teachers. (Despite their heading “Confidential Working Draft / Please Do Not Distribute or Copy,” these documents are now inofficialcirculation - a change in status made very soon after they were somewhat mysteriously...

  10. Appendices
    (pp. 137-164)
  11. Notes
    (pp. 165-186)
  12. References
    (pp. 187-188)