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Understanding and Using Educational Theories

Understanding and Using Educational Theories

Second Edition

December 2018 | 312 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This textbook gives readers a clear overview of a selection of the most influential thinkers on education in the last hundred year, including established names (Vygotsky, Bruner, Dewey), more recent thinkers (Freire, hooks, Claxton) and other key names whose writing has helped shaped our views on teaching and learning. This second edition includes new chapters on Albert Bandura, Dylan Wiliam and Carol Dweck.

Each chapter includes: 
  • Practical examples showing how theories can be used to inform classroom teaching
  • Critiques of each theorist exploring opposing viewpoints and the strengths and weaknesses of different ideas
  • Reflective tasks inviting you to apply what you've read to your own educational experiences. 

Chapter 1: John Dewey: A democratic notion of learning
Chapter 2: Maria Montessori: Liberating the child
Chapter 3: Jean Piaget: Understanding the mind of the child
Chapter 4: Lev Vygotsky: An early social constructivist viewpoint
Chapter 5: B.F. Skinner: The father of operant conditioning
Chapter 6: Benjamin Bloom: Learning through taxonomies
Chapter 7: Malcolm S. Knowles: Contextualising adult learning
Chapter 8: Jerome Bruner: An evolution of learning theories
Chapter 9: Albert Bandura: Learning through observation
Chapter 10: Urie Bronfenbrenner: The ecology of human development
Chapter 11: Paulo Freire: Oppression, freedom and critical approaches to education
Chapter 12: Donald Schön: Reflection and learning
Chapter 13: David Kolb: Experiential Learning Theory
Chapter 14: Jean Lave and Etienne Wenger: Socially situated learning and communities of practice
Chapter 15: Guy Claxton: Learning power
Chapter 16: Dylan Wiliam: Assessment for learning
Chapter 17: Carol Dweck: Mindsets and motivation

Accessible and thorough overview of the key theorists important to all learning about education at this time. Important and game-changing educational thinkers such as Carol Dweck are critically explored, and their ideas illustrated with classroom applications. The link with other theorists is a gift to the reader - connections made that contextualise the educational thinkers. 

Ellie Hill
Course Leader Education Studies at the University of Worcester

Of the theorists listed in this book, I discuss 13 of them in my teaching across my two year course. This makes it a resource that is of significant value to me and my students. However, whilst the content of each chapter is informative and meets the requirements in terms of developing knowledge, it is rather 'wordy' for some of my trainees, who are experiencing higher education study for the first time. Whilst I find it extremely accessible, some of my students have found it less so. Overall though, it is a very good starting point for introducing students to educational theory.

Mrs Jacquie Hodges
Education, Walsall College
September 27, 2019

A quality addition to our reading list. This allows us to provide a students with contextual examples upon which to explore the implementation of educational theory within their sitting. An absolute must for any Teacher Training programme.

Mr Geoff Martin Hughes
Education, Leicester and Leicestershire SCITT
May 20, 2019

Excellent textbook that offers further clarification of each theory for students who approach a theoretical understanding of children and their development. A must read for all ECE/Childhood/ITE students

Dr Chelle Davison
Early Years Development and Learning, Coventry University
December 12, 2018

This book is a great introduction to a range of Learning theory whih enables trainee teachers to dip in and out of theory and relate this to their practice.

Ms Dionne Ross
Faculty of Education and Society, Sunderland University
January 31, 2019

Sample Materials & Chapters