PEN Academic Publishing   |  ISSN: 1554-5210

International Journal of Progressive Education 2018, Vol. 14(2) 176-189

What does it mean to teach? Redefining the teacher in an era of misconception

W. Jason Niedermeyer

pp. 176 - 189   |  DOI:   |  Manu. Number: MANU-1708-29-0001.R2

Published online: April 25, 2018  |   Number of Views: 65  |  Number of Download: 108


It seems that in the mind of the public, teachers have come to be defined by what they solicit (protection in the form of a union) and what they fail to elicit (passing scores for students on standardized tests) as opposed to what it is they do, which is teach. This misinterpretation may very well arise from the lack of clarity in defining the practice of teaching. Using the emerging recognition of non-human animals as social transmitters of information to provide insight into what teaching is from an evolutionary perspective, this paper explores the inextricable link between biology and educational philosophy. Using Dewey’s (1902, 1944, 1953) polymathic approach to investigating and understanding education as both a model and a foundation, this paper identifies nexus points between pedagogical theory, cognitive neuroscience, and ethology. The result is a redefinition of both the teacher and the act of teaching that has the potential to bring clarity to the purpose of a profession that has long suffered from public—and political—misperception.

Keywords: Teaching, John Dewey, social transmission, academic optimism, evolutionary education, teacher evaluation

How to Cite this Article?

APA 6th edition
Niedermeyer, W.J. (2018). What does it mean to teach? Redefining the teacher in an era of misconception. International Journal of Progressive Education, 14(2), 176-189. doi: 10.29329/ijpe.2018.139.13

Niedermeyer, W. (2018). What does it mean to teach? Redefining the teacher in an era of misconception. International Journal of Progressive Education, 14(2), pp. 176-189.

Chicago 16th edition
Niedermeyer, W. Jason (2018). "What does it mean to teach? Redefining the teacher in an era of misconception". International Journal of Progressive Education 14 (2):176-189. doi:10.29329/ijpe.2018.139.13.

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