Aims of Education Essay

Education has been conceived so variously in human history, especially in term of its aims. Copra (2005) defines the term ‘Aims’ as: “Long-term ambitions which may or may not be achieved, but which provide personal motivation and direction” (p. 16). Perhaps more than other aspects of human existence, it is education which lends a direction to human efforts through a certain underlying ‘philosophy: “a set of ideas about the nature of reality and about the meaning of life” (McGreevy & Herbert, 1998, p. 130).

However, aims of education depend on the philosophy that prevails at he time of determining the aims of education.Different philosophies hold different views about the aims of education: “Certain philosophies have created narrow patriots. Others have produced cultured individuals. Some others are responsible for bringing up spiritual men and women” (Shade, 2001, p. 110).

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In fact, a philosophy or an ideology serves as a back-bone in determining the objectives or end results of an education system. Western Philosophy and Aims of Education If we sift the history of education in the West right from the time of Greeks to the present contemporary era we would come across the following major schools of Hough influencing the aims of Education: 1.Idealism: Idealism is considered the oldest philosophy of Western culture, dating back to ancient Greece. Socrates (469-399 B. C. ), one of the most honored philosophers and the earliest exponents of the idealistic school of thought looked upon the aim of education as not verbal instructions but to enable the individual, by developing in him the power of thought to acquire knowledge by himself, I.

E. By self-realization. For this purpose, he presented the “Dialectic Method/Socratic Method” which is also called “Question/Discussion Method”. . Realism: Aristotle (384-322 B. C.

), a student of Plato and great Greek philosopher, was the leading figure of this school of thought. He believed in “dualism – the tendency to view reality as composed of two constituent elements form and of matter” (Kneeler, 1964, p. 37).

Following are the main aims of education in Realism: Equipping students with knowledge and skill needed to understand and master their physical environment. Enabling students to adjust themselves with adult approved behavior. (Shade, 2001, p. 141) 3.Existentialism: Sorer Aggrieved (1813-1855) is considered the originator of Existentialism. Existentialists believe that the physical world has no inherent meaning apart from human experience. Existentialists believe that the main aim of education is to: “Develop authentic individuals who exercise freedom of choice and take responsibility of their action” (McGreevy & Herbert, 1998, p. 139).

4. Marxism: The leading proponent of this school of thought was Karl Marx, an immensely was famous for his analysis of history in terms of class struggles.The aims of education, according to Marxist, are: “Shape people and institutions; change material conditions of society, producing classless society’ (McGreevy & Herbert, 998, p. 139). 5.

Beethoven’s: B. F. Skinner, is called the father of Behaviorism. According to this school of thought, the aim of education is to: “engineer environments that efficiently maximize learning” (McGreevy & Herbert, 1998, p.

139). 6. Cosmogonist: Cognition means the process of thinking and knowing.The aim of education, in cosmogonists’ view, is to “develop thinking skills for lifelong self-directed learning” (McGreevy & Herbert, 1998, p. 139). 2. 7 Naturalism: “Naturalism is based on the assumption that nature is the whole of reality'(Kneeler 68). Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778 ) was the exponent figure of this school of thought.

Rousseau stressed that what is natural is good. According to Naturalists, following are the aims of education: (1) Self-expression; (2) Autonomous development individuality; (3) Improvement of racial gains; (4) Preparation for the struggle for existence. Shade 125) 2. 8. Pragmatism: According to the Pragmatists, “truth [is] a tentative assertion derived from human experience (Kneeler 82). The leading figure of the pragmatic educational philosophy was John Dewey (1859-1952), an American educationist. He believed that the aim of education is to “Develop and apply practical knowledge and skills for life in a progressive democratic society’ (McGreevy & Herbert 139). 2.

9 Perennials: Perennials believe that education, like human nature, is a constant. The leading proponents of this philosophy were Hutchins and Adler.According to McGreevy & Herbert, “the perennials argue people are basically the same, regardless of where they live and who they are, thus all people need the same basic education” and that “education should consist of a fundamental grounding in history, language, thematic, science, literature, and humanities”(147). 2. 10 Essentialist: Essentialist asserts that ‘Essence’ is prior to ‘Existence’ and that “education involves the learning of the basic skills, arts, and sciences that have been useful in the past and are likely to remain useful in the future” (Kneeler 256). The exponent figure of this school was William C.Bagley.

The aim of education, as the Essentialist hold, is the “Acquisition of culture; cultural literacy for personal benefit” (McGreevy & Herbert 139). 2. 11 Social Reconstructions: A key word to learn when trying to understand postmodern education is instructions. The leading figures of this educational movement was George Counts. The reconstruction theory seeks to rebuild the society afresh. Its supporters believe that the role of education is to create a new social order that will fulfill the basic values of our culture and at the same time harmonize with the underlying social and economic forces of the modern world.

According to them, the aim of education is to “Solve social problems and create a better world” (McGreevy & Herbert 139). 3. Islam and Aims of Education Like Western philosophies of education, Islam also holds a view on the aims of education. However, it presents an independent, unique and much broader have got a logical connection. As a revealed religion, there is an objective quality of the goals of education in Islam. 3. 1 Philosophy in Islam: Philosophy gets its roots from the ancient Greece.

It emphasizes on the search of truth with the help of human reason.It is known as false’ in Arabic. On the other hand, Islam is founded on the Word of Allah or the revealed knowledge. The way Islam came into contact with philosophy is explained by Fakery (1997) in the following words: The rapid expansion of Muslim Arab civilization in the 100 years after the death of the Prophet Muhammad [SAW] brought the faith into close contact with Greek, Persian, Egyptian, Syrian and Indian cultures and certain elements of those cultures incorporated (sometimes on adapted form) into Islamic thought.

However, ‘Islamic Philosophy takes its roots from the Holy Curran. 3. 2 Education in Islam: The term ‘education’, as finds its meaning in Western philosophy, does not correspond very closely to any one exclusive term in Arabic. In fact, there are three words which are normally translated as ‘education’_ one emphasizing knowledge; one growth to maturity and one the development of good manners. However, all these concepts aim at producing good Muslims with an understanding of the Islamic rules of behavior and a strong knowledge of and commitment to the faith.Ashram defines Islamic education as: an education which trains the sensibilities of pupils in such a manner that in their..

. Approach to all kinds of knowledge they are governed by the deeply felt ethical values of Islam. They are trained and mentally so disciplined that they want to acquire knowledge not merely to satisfy an intellectual curiosity or Just for material worldly benefit but to grow up as rational, righteous beings and to bring bout the spiritual, moral and physical welfare of their families, their people and mankind.Their attitude derives from a deep faith in God and a wholehearted acceptance off God-given moral code. (Hussein & Ashram 1) 3. 3 Aims of Education: Complete Submission to His Will: Islam means complete submission to the Supreme Being of Allah (STW) and His Shari’s. The sole purpose of man’s creation as described in the Holy Quern is to worship Allah (STW): “And I have not created the Jinn and the men but that they may worship Me. ” (al-Czarinas 51: 56) So, according to Islam, the purpose of the creation of humanity should also be the ole purpose, aim and objective of philosophy of Islamic education I.

. The complete, unconditional submission to the Supreme Will of Allah (STW), the Almighty. As Arizona puts it: Thus in Islamic creed, the idea of omnipresence of God permeates life in its totality God is everywhere and hence prayers can be said anywhere A Muslim is supposed to be in communion with God throughout his life -? sitting on the prayer- rug, laboring in the field, defending his country’s borders, in short, while doing anything and everything. (113) 3. 4 ‘Taws’ (piety) and ‘ODL’ Justice) as theCornerstones of Islamic Teachings: ‘Taws’ occupies a pivotal position in the aims of Islamic teachings. The Holy Curran considers it a requisite for getting Divine Guidance (daddy’): This is a perfect Book; there is no doubt in it; it” -?IQ is a guidance for the righteous” (al-Bazaar 2: 2) Quern clearly says that the flesh of animals sacrificed does not reach Allah; what reaches Him is the piety or taws’ operated behind these teachings”(Arizona 115). The Quern also gives us a clue to the achievement of taws’ or excellence of character: .

Be Just: that is Next to piety’ (al-Maida 5: 8)” LSI#l In fact, “With respect to man Justice means basically a condition and situation whereby he is in his right and proper place” (al-Tats 26). Thus, Islam aims at preparing such persons who are pious and Just. 3. 5 Justice implies knowledge: Islam has made it obligatory on all believers to acquire knowledge.

In the very first verses of the Quern, the prophet Hazard Muhammad (SAW) was instructed to read: J-is “Convey thou in the name of thy Lord Who created Created man from a clot of blood. Al- ‘Alas 96: 1-5) The best Islamic education must encompass the two traditional categories of knowledge, and the hierarchical relationship between them; revealed knowledge, attained through the religious sciences; and acquired knowledge, attained through the rational, intellectual and philosophical sciences. In Islam, both types of knowledge, the revealed and the acquired, contribute to the strengthening of faith, the former through the careful study of the revealed word of Allah STW and the latter through the systematic study of the world of man and the universe.The Curran appeals constantly to reason and experiment which is a blessing indispensable to arrive at proper Judgment.

It invites & directs the humans to study the reality. 3. 6 Taws and Faith: The basic features of the Islamic constitution as embodied in the Quern & Saunas are the creed or doctrine (Qaeda) or faith (trust and belief founded on authority) as belief in Allah STW, faith in the prophet SAW and the basic attitude that all human activity should follow in the complete submission to Allah STW.Islamic education has to inculcate these beliefs and attitudes in Muslim youth. The more comprehensive equivalent of faith’ in the Arabic language is “Inman” derived from the root-word ‘Man’ which means freedom from fear, security, peace, satisfaction, trust, affirmation, acceptance of correctness and submission or resignation to truth. According to the Holy Quern a ‘Believer’ I. E. A Mini must have faith in (1) Allah, (2) The Hereafter, (3) The Unseen Celestial powers called Malaria (roughly translated as Angels), (4) The Book and (5) The holy prophets.

Has 242) 3. 7 ‘Jadeite Side by side with the inculcation and strengthening of these basic values, Islamic education must create in the minds of Muslim youth an adaptability and a demonstrate such an adaptability during the prime of Islamic intellectual pre eminence. They acquired Greek learning, subjected it to investigation, experimentation and expansion in such diverse fields as algebra, geometry, astronomy, navigation, chemistry & medicine and evolved the scientific principles of empiricism.This attitude extended into Europe in the fifteenth & the sixteenth centuries as part of the Renaissance. The Islamic education system must now adopt the same scientific empiricism in worldly matters which the Muslims themselves invented but have forgotten during the past five centuries. The value of adaptability, experimentation and tolerance (as opposed to dogma) must be embodied in the new yester. This will, in all probability, require the institution of ejected or interpretation of the Islamic law.An Islamic educational system is an integrating force and it prepares men for ejected where it is due.

In the words of Cabal: The teachings of the Quern that life is a process of progressive creation necessitates that each generation, guided but unhampered by the work of its predecessors, should be permitted to solve its own problems. (1989) 3. 8 Action as Complementary to Faith: In Islam good actions are a requisite to faith. The Holy Curran says: “By the fleeting Time, Surely, man is in a state of loss Except those who believe and do good Sushi y;jell works” (al-‘Cars 103: 1-3) 3.

Enjoining Right and Forbidding Wrong: According to Has, “It [Islam] is not only a ‘religion’ of the Muslims, in the usual sense of the word; it is their whole life. It encompasses all aspects of human life: social, cultural, economic, educational, spiritual, material, political, in fact, all. A cult of universal brotherhood must, of necessity, be highly organized. (244) What Islam aims to produce are sentient and committed individuals who work for the promotion of all that is good ND the renunciation of all that is bad for the ultimate success of all human-beings.The Holy Curran says: You are people raised for the good of mankind; you enjoin what is good and forbid evil and believe in Allah” (AAA-I-‘Lamar 3:110) 3.

10 Sincerity of Motive (Mahayana’): According to Arizona, “Islam gives due consideration to human weaknesses, and, therefore, accepts from a person whatever he may achieve, with the sincerity of motive” (1 17); and that “Motive (anyway) is a serious factor in the acquisition of education. In fact, Islam Judges all conduct according to its motives” (116).Conclusion: The aims of education stem from the kind of philosophy directing them. Western 4. Of education have been changing and varying from one approach to another; it ignores the true self of man (both physical and spiritual); its chief sources of knowledge are senses, reason and intuition which are decidable and temporary; it neglects the final purpose of man; therefore, it fails to provide one single approach and thus leaves man into chaos and confusion.

On the other hand, Islam, having a divine base, aiming to bring man closer to God and seek His pleasure as his ultimate IM, is characterized by clarity, realism, sublimity and singleness of direction; thus, offering a solution to all of man’s problems and giving him a right direction in this world. References The Holy Quern. Al-Tats.

De. Aims and Objectives of Islamic Education. Jessed: Hooded and Sought, 1979. Gamma, Kara.A Futuristic Paradigm of Education.

Islamabad: BBC Enterprises, 2003. Copra, Rakes, De. Academic Dictionary of Education. Delhi: Aisha Books, 2005. Fakery.

Islamic philosophy, theology and mysticism. Oxford: Enrolls, 1997. Has, Mazda A.

Educational Philosophy of the Holy Curran. Lahore: Institute of Islamic culture, 1990. Hussein, S. S. & Ashram, S.

A. Crisis in Muslim education. London: Hooded & Sought, 1979. Cabal, A. M.

The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam. Lahore: Cabal Academy, 1989. Kneeler, George F. Introduction to the Philosophy of Education.

Los Angels: University Of California, 1964. McGreevy Robert F. & Joanne M.. Herbert. Foundations of Education.

London: Allan & Bacon, 1998. Arizona, Stayed S. Islamic Philosophy of Education. Lahore: Institute of Islamic Culture, 1986. Shade, S. M.

De. Philosophy of Education. Lahore: Majored Book Depot, 2001.


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