Schooling Approaches and Ethical Principles at Work

Learners enroll in school to gain knowledge of various fields they are interested in, albeit the theories on philosophies around the schooling. Typically, each teacher would have their way of teaching students based on their skills and competency, experience, and environment. The schooling approach adopted in a school depends on the personal and interpersonal skills of a teacher. Besides, the national need as captured in a curriculum would inform the type of approach the schools would use. Traditionally, lessons taught are to pass generally good skills to the students. However, as education evolves due to the new market need for specialized skills, schooling approaches have changed to meet the changing demands. As such, different schooling approaches are available for adoption by any education system depending on the parents, the society, and the nation. The paper discusses the schooling approaches and how their ethical principles work.

First, the perennial approach to schooling is the most common method that learners are introduced to at an early stage. Perennials theory is a philosophy that supports the learning of universal truth and reason (Orbits et al., 1970). The theory has fundamental ideologies, including idealism, realism, and neo-Thomas logic. Based on the basic ideas of perennials, students should learn the eternal truth of spiritual and intellectual skills. In this theory, learners are exposed to the universality of truth and union with God (Orbits et al., 1970). Education should never end but be a continuous process that one undergoes throughout the life span to prepare for life itself. The theory prepares the student both intellectually and spiritually (Orbits et al., 1970). The ethical principle of perennials is the belief in everyone’s value and worth that come through intellect and soul. The trickle-down effect of the perennial approach to school on work ethics is promoting equality and fairness to all. The philosophy supports equal treatment and the provision of equal opportunities to all. Inherently, humans are born with an intellect that improves through didactic learning, coaching, and spiritual devotion (Orbits et al., 1970).

Second, progressivism theory focuses on real-world issues and problem-solving as the primary learning skill. The approach looks at the democratic and corporative learning environment and how they help students collectively learn how to solve real-world problems (Orbits et al. 1970). Through the theory, learners get skill sets that enable them to process that work and do things that can achieve particular results. Therefore, progressivism theory is a direct contradiction of the perennials that focuses on tradition, universal God, and truth (Orbits et al. 1970). Progressivism is concerned with the current challenges and their solutions hence, making students pragmatic and creative. Progressivism is an ethical principle that promotes a democratic society where morality, sociality, economics, and politics balance (Orbits et al. 1970). The philosophy pushes students’ teaching to embrace teamwork, corporate, be decision-makers, and have the skillset for problem-solving. As such, students learn how to collaborate in solving problems facing their societies through proper decision-making.

Third, the behaviorism theory of learning focuses on human behavior that is influenced by external factors. People respond to stimuli from the environment they live in, so such actions are not constant. Therefore, students can be modeled into socially acceptable behavior by adequately setting up the learning environment. The idea supports the manipulation of the environment to influence a learner’s behavior (Orbits et al. 1970). There are seven ethical principles of the behaviorism theory, including behaviors are learned, people respond to stimuli, the action is teachable, adaptable, and changeable, change must be defined and specific; behavior change must be individual specific. Learning should be environment and time-based. The seven principles prepare students to be responsible members of society by adopting high moral standards that benefit everyone.

I support the integration of progressivism and behavioral theories into learning. The two approaches prepare learners to be aware of their environment, be adaptive to new skills, be ready to learn, and make the right decisions to solve problems (Orbits et al., 1970). For example, progressivism philosophy focuses on difficulties and decision-making; hence, it is good to make students able to create solutions to the many life challenges societies face currently. Besides, behaviorism ideology is essential as it makes learners have good morals, learn new good practices, change outdated behaviors, and respond accordingly to society’s changing needs. The main disadvantage of perennials is that it focuses on old ways of performing activities. God is essential; it cannot override the much-needed solutions to the world’s problems. For example, religion, which is part of the spiritual ideology of related to perennials has led to the division of humanity through denominations.

In conclusion, schooling approaches shape how learners get knowledge. The choice of a learning approach from another depends on the societal need. For example, a society that needs its learners to be great thinkers and decision-makers will use progressivism theory in schooling. While a community, which is interested in the spiritual development of its learners will use perennial philosophy. However, based on the world’s dynamism, using a mix of theories can be of great importance to both the students and the community.


Orbits, P. A., Webb, R. A., Sutterer, J. R., & Howard, J. L. (1970). Cardiac deceleration and reaction time: An evaluation of two hypotheses. Psychophysiology, 6(6), 695-706. Web.

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ChalkyPapers. "Schooling Approaches and Ethical Principles at Work." August 9, 2022.