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.

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Abstract

Commentary

"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:

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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

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