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Herbert Spencer.


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Herbert Spencer Brief background information

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Herbert Spencer.

  1. 1. FOUNDATION OF EDUCATION Group Assignment Topic: Spencer : Social Darwinist and Utilitarian Educator Group Members: 1. IV Molyna 2. Chhun Kimsan 3. Huseyin KIRIK
  2. 2. Herbert Spencer (THE FOUNDER OF SOCIAL DARWINISM THEORY) OUICK FACTS FAMOUS AS : PHILOSOPHER, BIOLOGIST, SOCIOLOGIST NATIONALITY : BRITISH BORN ON : 27 APRIL 1820 DIED AT AGE : 83 BORN IN : DERBY, ENGLAND DIED ON : 08 DECEMBER 1903 INVENTIONS : PAPER CLIP His father was a school teacher and a man of independent views. His father believed in self-education. So, he encouraged Herbert to find out answers to his own problems. Also his father taught him physics, chemistry and geometry. So he received a knowledge of these sciences early in life. His uncle taught him some school subjects and at the age of seventeen he had the knowledge of an average school student.
  3. 3. Herbert Spencer (1820-1903)  Herbert Spencer was an English philosopher, biologist and sociologist.  He highly contributed his expertise knowledge in ethics religion, anthropology , economics, political theory, philosophy, biology, sociology and psychology.  He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992.  He was the first person to coin the phrase “survival of the fittest”  His works were translated into many other languages of the world including German, Italian, Spanish, French, Russian, Japanese and Chinese.
  4. 4. Social Darwinism (Charles Darwin)  Social Darwinism is the conflict between social groups which results in the most socially capable or fit group coming out on top as the winner, usually in terms of influence and wealth.  According to social Darwinism, rich people would succeed and poor people would fail.  Survival of the fittest refers to the most adaptable species being able to live and reproduce.
  5. 5. Herbert Spencer- Social Darwinism Education I. Theory of evolution Herbert Spencer was known as one of the leading Social Darwinists in the late nineteenth- early twentieth century America. As a social Darwinist, Spencer helped gain acceptance of the theory of evolution which also became the basis for most of his books and teaching. II. A social Theory based on Darwin  In Spencer’s work “social status” he stated that individual freedom was extremely important and that the government should play a limited role in society especially in the schools.
  6. 6. III.Opposition to public schools  He did not believe in the public school system. His major criticism of the school system was that it did not prepare children to live in society.  Instead, Spencer believed in the private school system which competed for the brightest student. Because of his belief in competition conflict and struggle Spencer felt that the most exemplary schools would eventually acquire the best teachers and students.
  7. 7. Principles of Teaching and Learning  He believed that people in an industrialized society needed a utilitarian education in order to learn useful scientific skills and subjects.  Learning should be a sensory experience where a student interacts within his/her environment ; a slow, gradual, and inductive process.  Children should be encouraged to explore and discover which would allow them to acquire knowledge naturally.  A student should only engage in those activities that would allow him/her to survive in society.
  8. 8. Education and Schooling  Spencer became one of the major proponents of modern curriculum theory.  In his work “What Knowledge is of Most Worth ? ” Spencer stated that this question needed to be answered before any curriculum was chosen or any instruction commenced.  To achieve this advancement Spencer believed that there were five activities necessary in curriculum.  Once again the main goal was to teach subjects that would contribute to successful living. Spencer’s ideas concerning curriculum were widely accepted in the United States.
  9. 9. Education and Schooling  Spencer never loved old traditions.  He wants to lead the child to a very high ideal by developing his interests.  Spencer criticizes the curriculum of his day because it lack practical utility.  In the educational system of his times adequate attention was not paid to the future preparation of children.  Spencer identified five types of activities in the curriculum; 1. Self-preservation 2. Indirect Self-preservation 3. Rearing of Offspring 4. Citizenship 5. Leisure of Life
  10. 10. 1. Self-preservation (feelings which warn people or animals to protect themselves from difficulties or dangers)  For picking up the art of self-preservation, Spencer recommends the study of the sciences of physiology, hygiene, physics and chemistry.  Spencer believes that a knowledge of these subjects will help one to preserve his health by furthering the various spontaneous activities.
  11. 11. 2. Indirect Self-preservation  Activities pertaining to indirect self-preservation are those which help one to make a successful living.  We require the help of mathematics in various activities pertaining to our daily life.  Geology mathematics, chemistry, physics and astrology help us in many such vital activities.  Spencer recommends the teaching of these sciences because they prepare us for life.
  12. 12. 3. Rearing of Offspring (To help someone to grow up.)  Spencer wants to give the knowledge of rearing of offspring to children in the school because it is difficult for them to rear their children properly.  Therefore, parents should be prepared for bringing up children. 4. Citizenship Spencer desires that the child should be a worthy citizen. He thinks that history cannot be used properly without the knowledge of science. He has shown how history books should be written and how the various happenings should be described.
  13. 13. 5. Leisure of Life  Spencer has a very liberal (general) outlook of life.  For this he wants to teach painting, music, sculpture, literature and poetry to the child.  But for the study of these arts, Spencer thinks that the child must study the science first, because the various sciences are at the root of all these fine arts.  He wants to make everything dependent on sciences.
  14. 14. Influence on Educational Practices Today  He wanted private schools to compete against each other in trying to attract the brightest students and most capable teachers.  Spencer’s social Darwinism became very popular in the last half of the 19th century when industrialization was changing American and Western European societies.  The standardized testing used in the No Child Left Behind Act is a way of introducing competition into schools, as it identifies achieving and non- achieving schools and teachers.  Spencer would raise entry standards for students to pre-service teacher- education program to make them more competitive.
  15. 15.  Before his influences the public school claiming that they would create monopoly for mediocrity by catering to the students of low ability, but he opposed it.  Education today continues to be influenced by Spencer’s Social Darwinist Theories. In fact, his curriculum activities based on human need are still being implemented in one form or another.  His influences are still felt as education continues to discuss voucher systems for private schools, the smaller role of government in education, and in the stressing of teaching skills that will assist students in becoming individuals who contribute to the good of society.
  16. 16.  Several of Spencer's works are being utilized in today's most prestigious universities.  His "Principles of Biology" is a text at Oxford University. His "Principles of Psychology" text can be found at Harvard.  The "Study of Sociology" is Spencer's work used not only as a textbook at Yale, but was the textbook used for the first course in Sociology in the United States.  Sociology became a discipline in the United States because of Spencer's impressive work.
  17. 17. Questions  What do you think about Spencer’s idea?  Do you think should we apply this in our education system?  Anyone remember his 5 curriculum activities? AND  What do you think about his five curriculum activities?