Beyond Rote-Memorisation: Confucius’ Concept of Thinking

Educational Philosophy and Theory 47 (5):428-439 (2015)

Abstract
Confucian education is often associated with rote-memorisation that is characterised by sheer repetition of facts with no or little understanding of the content learnt. But does Confucian education necessarily promote rote-memorisation? What does Confucius himself have to say about education? This article aims to answer the above questions by examining Confucius’ concept of si based on a textual study of the Analects. It is argued that Confucius’ concept of si primarily involves an active inquiry into issues that concern one’s everyday life, promotes inferential thinking, and facilitates self-examination. Far from advocating rote-memorisation, Confucius highlights the need for us to take ownership of our own learning, engage in higher order thinking, and reflectively apply the lessons learnt in our lives.
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DOI 10.1080/00131857.2013.879693
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References found in this work BETA

Thinking Through Confucius.David L. Hall & Roger T. Ames - 1991 - Philosophy East and West 41 (2):241-254.
Confucius: The Analects.D. C. Lau (ed.) - 2000 - Columbia University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

A Confucian Conception of Critical Thinking.Charlene Tan - 2017 - Journal of Philosophy of Education 51 (1):331-343.
A Confucian Conception of Critical Thinking.Charlene Tan - 2016 - Journal of Philosophy of Education 50 (4).
Confucius: Philosopher of Twenty-First Century Skills.Leonard Tan - 2016 - Educational Philosophy and Theory 48 (12):1233-1243.

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