American Scholar: Application of Theory versus Practice in Education

June 22, 2022 by Essay Writer

Due to recent changes and developments, the stages in higher education landscape has evolved throughout history; universities are no longer teaching or examining regimented classrooms and students the right pathways to their success. Instead, they are being taught through various methods such as research; which has proven to be less effective in learning. Over the last decades, theory versus practice in school systems has quickly skyrocketed people’s interests with its concept. Teaching has raised current concerns in learning societies due to the lack of proper school administration; that are averting real thought. As more institutions implement student-centered learning, methods of teaching will shift its focus of instruction to the student and help them gain control over their learning experience. John Dewey, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Dylan Matthews each individually introduce their own coming of age ritual in which they make people become aware of the byproduct to their efficacy in the education system; however an improved education is envisioned better through the principle of practice over theory as a more flexible access for results.

The traditional concept of teaching has been embraced by many philosophies: such as efficiency, rationality, evidence, and ideal thoughts. Ralph Waldo Emerson provided a call for action to american literary independence in his book “The American Scholar”, where he urges the scholar to educate themselves by observing through nature; in doing so he or she will learn more about the real world and their true identities. Yet, Emerson also inspires people to study from books and understand the importance they bring to education and learning; however he also recommends everyone to stay cautious as to books can also contain a dangerous influence on the present time. For instance in his lecture he states “books are the best things, well used; abused, among the worst.” (Emerson 284). Here he emphasizes that while the american people are motivated to read and learn, one should also value like Emerson thought and discussion as the right ways to fully develop personal opinions. Hence why practical methods of teaching are more useful to grasping better knowledge in education. Emerson believes that the current state of scholarship has become a problem. His goal is to remind attendees of the education and duties of the scholar, the importance and influence of nature on our minds. Emerson pursues the scholar to be “Man Thinking” rather than “the parrot of other men’s thinking” (Emerson 282). While Emerson’s view on the importance of independent thought, the key to learning is to allow the student to learn in one’s own way; by practicing.


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