Using A Living Theory Methodology In Improving Practice And Generating Educational Knowledge in Living Theories


Jack Whitehead1
Department of Education, University of Bath, Bath, UK
Visiting Professor, Ningxia Teacher's University, China


Abstract:The approach outlined below is focused on a living theory methodology for improving practice and generating knowledge from questions of the kind ‘How do I improve what I am doing?’ It also includes a new epistemology for educational knowledge. The new epistemology rests on a living logic of educational enquiry and living standards of judgment (Laidlaw, 1996) that include flows of life affirming energy with values that carry hope for the future of humanity.
The presentation emphasizes the importance of the uniqueness of each individual’s living educational theory (Whitehead, 1989) in improving practice and generating knowledge. It emphasizes the importance of individual creativity in contributing to improving practice and knowledge from within historical and cultural opportunities and constraints in the social contexts of the individual’s life and work.
The web-based version of this presentation demonstrates the importance of local, national and international communicative collaborations for improving practice and generating knowledge in the context of globalizing communications. Through its multi-media representations of educational relationships and explanations of educational influence in learning it seeks to communicate new living standards of judgment. These standards are relationally-dynamic and grounded in both improving practice and generating knowledge. They express the life-affirming energy of individuals, cultures and the cosmos, with values and understandings that it is claimed carry hope for the future of humanity.


Keywords: living theory; action research; methodology; standards of judgment.


 1        This contribution draws on A Presentation at Zhejiang University, China on the 13 July 2008.