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Education by Paulo Freire

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Most education systems set the learner as an empty tank to be filled by the teacher. Paulo Freire, a Brazilian educationalist, drew on this system of education and thought about progressive educational practices and liberation. In 1994, Gibson Richard of Pennsylvania State University conducted research into Freire’s liberation theory in education settings. Gibson found out that social justice could only be imposed through liberation, critical consciousness, reading the world and the word and finally comprehension of surroundings. Gibson states that literacy is the key to overcome irrationality and subordinate groups are bound to engage in political activities, and the result will be changes in governance structures. Servaes Jan conducted an undated research on participatory communication from a Freirean approach. Jan discovered that authentic participation helps in addressing issues that relate to democracy. This method involves dialogue, access to ideas, and self-management. In a democratic process, the key aspects of democratic communication should be embraced. In this research, access refers to the use of mainstream media to serve the public while participation involves self-management in public participation. The outcome of participatory communication is empowerment of every citizen in the community and the fruits are the formation of an egalitarian society. According to Freire’s Pedagogy, the role of the learner and the teacher are usually alternated, and a common ground of searching for the truth is established (Freire & Macedo, 1987).

In 1997, Bandura studied on learning models in the conventional classroom. He posited that students attribute their failures or successes to self-efficacy (Kember, 2002).). This approach is essential in promoting learning in a social setting, leads to social transformation and leads to conscientization among students.

In the fall of 2002, Chuk Keung Wong and Jane Siu-Ching Wong conducted a research on forty three students at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (Kember, 2002). The method used was based on Freire’s theory of interactive learning and the utilization of student’s experiences as fundamental themes in the learning system. The findings showed that self-determined subgroup projects proved to be very successful in forming an atmosphere where students are motivated within their interests. The students’ need to deliberate the aim of their projects aided them to develop consciousness about their computer structures that went past the learning skills.

The Identified Gaps

Nationalists like Mandela gained global authority with the exception that very few persons had seen his works. A difficult link has to be made while constructing a model of literacy, human consciousness, and liberation. A critical observation of Servaes’ research is that there is no collective path to progress. Every community has different plans, culture, and resources in regards to its own situation. One major failure in Bandura’s study is that, there are several validated ways of learning apart from the conventional way. In addition to that, there are several kinds of intelligence. Wong and Chuk’s research had one major shortcoming in terms of uniform resource allocation. In a learning situation, there are students endowed with resources and those that lack resources. Other students prefer to be directed by the instructor in every step. Other students may not be satisfied with the approach because of its lack of structure.

Areas Recommended for Further Research

Studies should be conducted on the attributions and believes of students in learning. Research should be done to track the differences in learning methods across various classes. This research should use both natural and quantitative methods and may establish dissimilarities in learning across racial subgroups and gender. Selfish groups can enhance their own interests through participatory communication. Although Freire posited that participatory communication can enhance empowerment, activists may use that platform to increase levels of dependency among individuals. Researchers should look into ways that participatory research can lead to dependency rather than empowerment and vice versa.

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