Philosophy of Education

Nel Noddings

Fourth Edition • July 28, 2015 • 284 pages

Print ISBN: 9780813349725 • $39.00 USD$50.50 CAN

Ebook ISBN: 9780813349893 • $25.99 USD$25.99 CAN

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Philosophy of Education introduces students to the evolution of educational thought, from the founding fathers to contemporary theorists, with consideration of both analytic and continental traditions. This classic text, originally designed to give the education student a comprehensive look at philosophical thought in relation to teaching, learning, research, and educational policy, has been updated to reflect the most current thinking in the field. For this fourth edition, a revised chapter on Logic and Critical Thinking examines how these topics play a role in light of the new Common Core standards. This is an essential text not only for teachers and future teachers, but also for anyone needing a survey of contemporary trends in philosophy of education.


Nel Noddings is Lee L. Jacks Professor of Education Emerita at Stanford University. She has taught at the elementary, junior high, senior high, and college levels and has served as acting dean of the School of Education at Stanford University. She holds six honorary doctorates and many other awards, including the Lifetime Achievement Award from American Educational Research Association.

List of Figures

1. Philosophy of Education before the Twentieth Century
2. The Philosophical and Educational Thought of John Dewey
3. Analytic Philosophy
4. Continental Philosophy
5. Logic and Critical Thinking
6. Epistemology and Education
7. Philosophy of Social Science and Educational Research
8. Ethics and Moral Education
9. Social and Political Philosophy
10. Problems of School Reform
11. Multiculturalism and Cosmopolitanism
12. Feminism, Philosophy, and Education


“Nel Noddings writes straightforwardly and lucidly about the complex ideas of both classic and contemporary philosophers of education. She has the rare ability to show the relevance of philosophy to the concrete practical problems that teachers face in the classroom… It is difficult to imagine a more ideal introduction for potential teachers to the rich subject of the philosophy of education.”
—Richard J. Bernstein, New School for Social Research

“Nel Noddings, one of the most well-known and well-respected philosophers of education working today, gives us here an excellent, up-to-date and state of the art text.… It fills a real need and will surely, and deservedly, become the standard textbook in philosophy of education. . . . Noddings consistently brings the student/reader to a clear sense of the ways in which philosophical controversies are relevant to educational debate.… I highly recommend it for use in introduction to philosophy of education classes at all levels, and for more advanced classes as well.”
Teaching Philosophy

“Serves as an admirable introduction to the philosophy of education.… Educators…will find the book most useful as an initial resource.”
Educational Research

“This book offers religious educators a clear, well-organized introduction to the subject.”

“An elegant contribution from a ‘masterful’ teacher. Vintage Noddings, it synthesizes, interprets, and updates the field as no other. Surely a wonderful and needed addition.”
—Lynda Stone, University of North Carolina

“Noddings provides a highly readable invitation to enter into ‘the immortal conversation’ on life and education. This is a fresh and enticing analysis of what constitutes philosophy of education.”
—Mary Anne Raywid, Hofstra University

“An outstanding contribution. In one volume, Nel Noddings offers a comprehensive and well-informed introduction to the issues and authors shaping the field of philosophy of education in this century. Noddings explains the major debates in an admirably clear and even-handed manner. This is the best overview of the field available today.”
—Nicholas Burbules, Educational Theory

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