Educational Theory 54 (3):315-341 (2004)

This paper explores the impact of John Dewey on the field of educational psychology. Dewey raised issues and ideas, such as the role of context and the reapproximation of knowledge, that would come to haunt education and psychology for the next century. And yet soon after the turn of the twentieth century, Dewey abandoned psychology and redefined his role in education. This paper traces some of the reasons behind the schism between Dewey and his ideas and the fields of education and psychology. The demand for a methodological purity, pushed by G.S. Hall and his students into the mainstream of both fields, elbowed Dewey's ideas out to the distant margins and Dewey himself out altogether. I argue that because the ideas and issues Dewey raised were never resolved, they keep reemerging in different theoretical forms. In the second part of this paper I examine four theoretical models that, in many ways, mirror Dewey's early ideas: Piagetianism/constructivism, sociocultural theory, cultural historical activity theory, and postmodernism
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DOI 10.1111/j.0013-2004.2004.00022.x
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