Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Why the development of character should be a central aim of school education
Author: Sharma, Shilpa
Awarding Body: Institute of Education, University of London
Current Institution: UCL Institute of Education (IOE)
Date of Award: 2011
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
What is character and what should its place be in school education? This thesis examines these two fundamental questions, contending ultimately, that character ought to be a central aim of school education. Underpinning this work are two premises that are clarified as the thesis progresses: (a) the notion of character is broader than moral character and (b) there is a valuable relationship between the development of character and human flourishing. This thesis contains 8 chapters and is divided into two major parts. The first part (consisting of 5 chapters) outlines and considers various perspectives on the concept of character. It is shown that there is a range of ideas associated with the label 'character', both in educational as well as in philosophical discourse; yet, there is a lack of consensus on what the notion entails. In particular, the contention herein is that the notion of character is not merely moral character, and a broader characterisation of the concept is one that is compatible with ancient philosophical thought (of Plato, Aristotle, as well as ancient Indian philosophy). The second part of the thesis (consisting of 3 chapters) endorses a broader notion of character and deliberates upon its implications in school education, particularly in relation to the aims of education. I begin by delineating a broader characterisation of character. Arguing that character should be an aim of education, I examine other prominent candidates (autonomy and wellbeing) in order to assess this claim. In particular, I argue that character is intrinsic to an individual's wellbeing (which has recently been advocated as a central aim of education). Thus, not only does this thesis shed light on the concept of character, it perhaps more importantly, reveals the necessity of this concept for school education.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available