What are the Aims of Education According to Pragmatism?
In such a world of fluctuating personalities, all that education can do is “to transmit the social backgrounds and outlooks characteristic of the community as a whole to all members of the rising generation.”
In other words, the aim of education is to prepare the child for membership in the modern community further as a corollary to this aim; the function is to give such techniques to the children as to enable them to solve the present-day problems efficiency.
Thus the purpose of education is to turn children into good pragmatists, that is, to teach them, ‘to take one thing at a time, and solve their problems co-operatively, with new techniques for new situations” according to the demands of the occasion
Realism would like to educate the individual for becoming ‘an unresisting bit of matter. It wants to expose him entirely to the almighty influence of the all-pervading physical law. On the other hand, pragmatism tries to equip the individual with the most up-to-date scientific tricks so that he may meet the tendencies of the biological and social environment successfully while, at the same time introducing the necessary changes also therein.
The realist does not reconcile with the puzzles of the free will, but for the pragmatist they do not exist at all he rejects them on the ground that they are pure fiction. Therefore, in the educational realm the pragmatist gives importance to the fact of actual experience alone.
The pragmatist view of education rebels against idealism which rests upon a basis transcending actual experience. The Absolute simply does not exist for the pragmatist Therefore, the pragmatist turns away from the transcendental aspects of idealism.
He wants to train the individual in such a way as not to proceed from disappointment, but from success to success and success of that kind which is meaningful to human beings in human situations
Thus according to pragmatism, the aim of education is to adjust the free, conscious, human being to the biological and social environment in a creative manner, because the individual is not only expected to adjust himself in the environment as it is, but he is also expected to improve upon it if his needs so demand.