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Reading: Moral education in the community of inquiry

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Moral education in the community of inquiry

Author:

Michael Hand

University of Birmingham, GB
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Abstract

Moral inquiry—inquiry with children and young people into the justification for subscribing to moral standards—is central to moral education and philosophical in character. The community of inquiry (CoI) method is an established and attractive approach to teaching philosophy in schools. There is, however, a problem with using the CoI method to engage pupils in moral inquiry: some moral standards should be taught directively, with the aim of bringing it about that pupils understand and accept the justification for subscribing to them; but directive moral teaching is widely thought to be impermissible in the CoI. In this article I identify, and push back against, three sources of resistance to directive teaching in the CoI literature: (i) the idea that imparting moral beliefs is indoctrinatory; (ii) the idea that questions discussed in the CoI must be open; and (iii) the idea that teachers in the CoI must be philosophically self-effacing. I argue for a more expansive understanding of the CoI method—one in which there is, after all, room for directive moral teaching.
How to Cite: Hand, M., 2020. Moral education in the community of inquiry. Journal of Philosophy in Schools, 7(2). DOI: http://doi.org/10.46707/jps.v7ii.118
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Published on 18 Dec 2020.
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