Accolades or achievement? Addressing the unforeseen consequences of therapeutic pedagogy

McWilliam, Erica L. (2015) Accolades or achievement? Addressing the unforeseen consequences of therapeutic pedagogy. International Journal of Leadership in Education, 18(1), pp. 122-130.

View at publisher



"We have found little to indicate that indiscriminately promoting self-esteem in today’s children or adults, just for being themselves, offers society any compensatory benefits beyond the seductive pleasure it brings to those engaged in the exercise. (Baumeister, Campbell, Krueger, & Vohs, 2005)"

In June this year, Wellesley High School became a focus of attention worldwide, following a graduation speech made by a teacher at the school. Departing from the traditional rhetoric of such ceremonies, English teacher David McCullough told the assembled graduates that they were neither special nor exceptional, but may well believe they were because they had been ‘pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, and bubble-wrapped, feted and fawned over’, an effect, he argued, of Americans’ ‘love of accolades more than genuine achievement’ (Christakis, 2012, p. 1). This assertion struck a chord not only in his home country, but more widely in the Western world, with many educators, childcare workers and parents experiencing a sense of unease about the extent to which this claim was justifiable, and if so, what sort of corrective might be needed.

Impact and interest:

0 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

8 since deposited on 07 May 2015
5 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 83954
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: therapeutic techniques, pedagogy, rigour and pleasure of learning, self-efficacy
DOI: 10.1080/13603124.2014.973911
ISSN: 1464-5092
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > OTHER STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190999) > Studies in the Creative Arts and Writing not elsewhere classified (199999)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: © 2014 Taylor & Francis
Deposited On: 07 May 2015 02:01
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2016 12:05

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page