Educational Psychology Essay Critical Analysis

QUESTION 1 Education most definitely plays a key role in building the future of our nation but many learners are still lacking the fundamentals of a basic quality education. The South African Constitution Act was passed in 1996 and came into operation on 4 February 1997 [26] (Duma, 1995). Chapter 2 of this Act contains the Bill of Rights in which the State guarantees the protection of individual’s fundamental rights (Duma, 1995). Section 29 talks about the right to Education (Duma, 1995). This section recognizes that every person has a right to basic education and to equal access to educational institutions (Duma, 1995).
It is clearly evident though that this has not taken place because black learners, especially in the rural areas are not receiving the necessary quality education that they are entitled to. Many schools in the rural areas still lack basic facilities such as running water, toilets, desks and electricity (Seroto, 2004). To worsen the situation some schools are built only of mud (Finnemore, 2009). Many township schools are in a serious state of dilapidation, partly due to theft of infrastructure and other forms of vandalism (Seroto, 2004).
The shortage of classrooms, equipment and other teaching resources is evident in many schools today (Finnemore, 2009). Poor school management practices and dysfunctional teacher evaluation are contributory factors (Finnemore, 2009). The poor state of our school buildings and facilities is reflective of the current budgetary crisis (Tedla, 1995). This lack of access to resources and materials by children in the rural areas leads to inequalities within our education system. Children in urban areas and white schools have access to a better quality education than children in the rural black areas.

Read also Memory – Forgetting
These inequalities today may be as a result of the Bantu education system. There has been inequality of access to education between the white and black schools in the past, and the evidence is brought forth when the political instability led to the disruptions of schools and centres for political indoctrination, leading to strikes and class boycotts, with the aim of demanding a change in the Black institutions of learning (Sedibe, 2011). According to teachers in Kwa-Mashu schools the core of all the problems facing schools today was the whole system of Bantu Education (Sedibe, 2011).
This implies that what is presently happening in schools today is the result of years of oppressive education (Sedibe, 2011). Due to inadequate and unequal access of resources these schools in rural areas cannot function effectively (Sedibe, 2011). It is therefore the responsibility of the Department of Education to supply adequate resources and make them available to all schools equally, in order to enhance a culture of teaching and learning within schools (Sedibe, 2011). This is a very important issue that needs to be taken seriously if we are talking about investing in the future of our children.
This means that rural areas need much more support from government than urban areas do in terms of education. They need to be allocated a fair share of the budget that will help remedy the bad conditions they are faced with. This can be achieved by providing them with all the necessary learning resources they need, which in turn will enable them to adequately equip themselves and thus guarantee them a bright future. Another issue that arises in our schools today is having teachers who are either unqualified or under-qualified.
This was as a result of the closure of most mission schools and teacher training facilities in 1953 which forced all teacher training into racially separated government training colleges, geared to extending the mass base of Bantu Education (Douglas, 2005). Since other professions were closed to them on racial or economic grounds, many people of colour became teachers by default (Douglas, 2005). As a result, under-qualified, unqualified and even un-matriculated teachers were employed (Douglas, 2005).
Training centres for our teachers today are a necessity if we desire to see pupils succeeding and achieving their goals. Teachers need to be equipped with the relevant skills and knowledge to carry out their roles appropriately and confidently. Government’s budget for education needs to set aside funds that will invest in training centres for teachers thus investing in the future and success of our learners, and in turn leading to a healthy, stable and developing nation. Another matter that arises is that of the apartheid system.
During the apartheid era black people were discriminated against and this was clearly evident in the area of education. The implementation of Bantu education ensured that the level of education provided to Africans could be differentiated, with a small urban population obtaining education beyond the primary level, while the majority of the African migrant labour force received only minimal primary education (Mabokela, 2000). Still focusing on the apartheid era, systems and laws were put in place that made sure that black people were excluded from certain opportunities and benefits.
For example, apprenticeship training programs designed for development of skills at workplaces were also for many years reserved solely for white persons (Finnemore, 2009). Overcoming the long shadow of apartheid education is proving a major hurdle to the development of our nation. In terms of government’s budget for education, has there been a failure to equally allocate resources? Government needs to revisit this budget to make sure that it is being fairly and equally distributed, so that every learner can have the opportunity to benefit from it.
Government’s spending on education has declined over the years (Tedla, 1995). Although many students are found in primary schools, and although this level of education is less expensive than secondary or tertiary levels, the financial support for it has steadily decreased (Tedla, 1995). Formerly White education was financed at 185 percent of the national average whereas the education departments of the former non-independent homelands were funded at 74 percent of the national average and the former ‘independent’ homelands at 67 percent (Seroto, 2004).
This clearly shows funding disparities with regard to the provision of education for White learners and for Black learners perpetuated by the former apartheid government (Seroto, 2004). This apartheid system has had an effect on our education system today. The South African budget also suffers from the effects of apartheid. The economy is still reeling from the economic downfalls of apartheid and there is a major problem in maintaining current levels of spending with the solution being unclear (Education in South Africa, 2005).
All the factors discussed above play a critical role in the development of our education system today and unless we make a conscious decision to take the necessary steps to amend these problems, the future of our children cannot be guaranteed. QUESTION 2 In the article provided it is very clear that the conditions for learning are not conducive at all for the students to learn. These conditions instead can lead to the demotivation and discouragement of the students.
Some of the negative learning conditions they are exposed to are: a tremendous shortage of learning facilities, resources and materials like desks, chairs, picture books and workbooks. The classroom floors are described by the teacher as a dirt road. This is definitely detrimental to the health and well-being of the learners. The classroom walls are described as raw and bare. We know that children need a stimulating and motivating environment to grow and without things like paintings, drawings and pictures on the walls it becomes very difficult for them to develop.
All these conditions that have been described above stand as a barrier to the ability of students to learn. These conditions could lead to the students’ failure to learn anything, not because they are incapable or incompetent but because of the poor and bad learning conditions they have been exposed to, leading to their failure to cope. For these students who attend school in these conditions, little can be learned, surely, on a day under a leaky roof or with no roof at all (Tedla, 1995). These problems can and do discourage pupil attendance (Tedla, 1995).
The Role of the Psychologist The role of the psychologist in such a context would be, first and foremost to understand the nature of each child within this context so that they may be able to assist them. For example, different children will behave and react differently to different situations. Some children may be resilient to such conditions and view them as opportunities to learn, instead of viewing them as barriers to learning. In such circumstances these children would do whatever it takes to work hard and achieve their goals no matter the circumstances.
Other children might end up discouraged, demotivated, depressed, frustrated, stressed and unhappy. It would be the responsibility of the psychologist to find out about the nature of each child by conducting assessments. Assessment of children requires special adaptation of assessment procedures and particular interview techniques (Holford et al. , 2001). These assessments could include one-on-one sessions with the child. In addition to interviewing children, using developmentally appropriate language, drawing techniques and imaginative play can elicit valuable nformation (Holford et al. , 2001). This could also include observing each child within the classroom setting and seeing how they respond and react within that classroom environment. For any comprehensive assessment of a child, direct observation of activity level, motor skills, verbal expression, and vocabulary are also essential (Holford et al. , 2001). Any kind of assessment used by the psychologist should not be complex but rather simplified so that learners are able to understand.
Questions must be simple and appropriate for the child’s developmental level (Holford et al. , 2001). This in turn will ensure that there is communication between the learner and the psychologist. It will also help to ensure that learners benefit from these sessions. It is also very important that the psychologist understands how the child views the circumstances in his or her environment. Therefore the primary goal of the interviewing technique is to gain the child’s own perspective (Holford et al. , 2001).
Teachers can also collaborate with the psychologists to help the learners. This is what is referred to as unified collaboration. It can often be useful for the psychologist to speak to the child’s teacher(s) as their reports can give valuable supplementary information (Holford et al. , 2001). A standard questionnaire could be given to the teacher to provide information about the child’s learning skills, ability to cope in a group situation, peer relationships, and relationships with adults in authority (Holford et al. , 2001). Possible Interventions by the Psychologist
A key component of Bronfenbrenner’s model (the ecological systems theory) is the understanding that children are also active participants in their own development, and the environment therefore does not simply impact on the child (Swart & Pettipher, 2005). Children’s perceptions of their context are central to understanding how they interact with their environments (Swart & Pettipher, 2005). The way they perceive their circumstances influences the way they respond to their human and physical contexts (Swart & Pettipher, 2005).
The microsystem refers to the activities or interactions in the child’s immediate surroundings (Swart & Pettipher, 2005). The mesosystem refers to connections or interrelationships among microsystems of homes, schools, and peer groups (Swart & Pettipher,). The psychologist could use both the microsystem and mesosystem in coming up with different kinds of interventions. For example, the psychologist could include systemic interventions with parents, teachers or the school itself (Landsberg, 2011).
A systemic intervention with parents would involve finding out more about the child in the home environment, how the child interacts with them as parents, how the child interacts with his or her peers and any other difficulties or problems the child may be experiencing at home. Another intervention could involve parent and teacher workshops (Landsberg, 2011). Parents and teachers could come together to discuss the progress of the children, the problems they are experiencing at home and at school and how parents can support teachers and vice versa, in assisting the children to overcome any obstacles or barriers they may be facing.
They could also assist the children in making their learning experience a more pleasurable and successful one. The school itself can also be involved in this intervention, by, for example, designing programs and projects (Landsberg, 2011). This could help students in developing their capacity to learn and work together in groups, as well as developing their communication skills within groups. It could also teach them how to love and support one another in such an environment.
These interventions used by psychologists should not only focus on the children’s weaknesses but should also focus on their strengths that can be used to compensate for their areas of weakness (Landsberg, 2011). These interventions should provide the learners with immediate benefits that can be realized, including the identification of social or emotional difficulties, considerations and coping strategies to enhance learning and methods for increasing motivation and interest in affected areas as required (Landsberg, 2011). QUESTION3
In this article, owning a toy is a dream rather than a reality for these children. They desire to have toys but because their parents are unemployed and the school cannot afford to provide them with these toys this is not a reality for them. Having toys should not be seen as a luxury but rather as a necessity for children of this age to grow and develop appropriately. They desire to have desks, chairs, picture books and many more resources. For them without these basic resources they feel they will not be able to realize their goals.
They also desire playgrounds, see-saws, pencils, toys and most importantly food. These desires are the kind that any child of school going age would have. Food is one of the very important and basic necessities for anyone to survive, no matter the age. If these children cannot even afford to get a decent meal it becomes very difficult for them to learn anything at school. They also desire water and toilets, which once again are basic necessities of life that one cannot live without. It is a sad fact that at this young age, these children have been denied the opportunity to the basic necessities of life.
Pupils dream of computers but they are yet to see one. In this fast-paced technological and global environment, every child should be exposed to a computer and given the basic skills of how to operate one. These children need to be given the opportunity to realize their goals and aspirations in life. At their young age it is difficult to expect them to understand what is going on. Therefore teachers, the government, the education department and parents all have a big role to play in the lives of these children in order to make sure that they realize and achieve their dreams.
Material conditions definitely need to be improved to enhance the learning of these children but they also need a strong support system from both parents and teachers to help them through their learning experience. One needs to get into the child’s world and see things from their perspective (Holford et al. , 2001). In this way they will be able to understand the children and what they are experiencing and thus be able to assist them. It is the responsibility of government to improve the conditions of these impoverished schools so that children can be able to learn and be productive in their learning experience.
They also need to provide more learning resources for the children so that they can enhance their ability to learn. Basic facilities such as running water, toilets, desks, chairs and electricity should be made available and easily accessible for these children. Parents within these communities also need assistance in finding employment or loans to start small businesses so that they too can be able to support their children and contribute to the schools they attend. The risk of children falling sick because they do not have access to clean and healthy water must be reduced.
This problem stands as a barrier to achieving their goals and dreams. It is the responsibility of our society, government, parents and teachers to work together in making sure that children overcome these barriers to learning by adequately equipping them in every possible way to realize their goals. All these factors that have been mentioned greatly contribute to the emancipation of these children and unless we all work together to see that these children are emancipated, their future cannot be secured. QUESTION 4
A detailed ideal education system within a multidisciplinary context that can improve the educational outcomes of children of school going age would be one that firstly: offers quality education for all learners. This means that all learners should have equal access to adequate facilities and resources (for example, clean running water, toilets, desks, chairs and electricity) within their school environment regardless of their race (whether they are black or white), regardless of where they live (in the rural or urban areas) and regardless of whether they are disabled or disadvantaged.
Secondly, this system should accommodate the different learning styles of different learners within schools. Some learners may need visual material to support them in their learning experience; some learners may need learning material to be broken up into smaller amounts; other learners may want to see the whole picture before the material is broken up; some learners may prefer studying with background music; others may prefer studying in a quiet place (Swart & Pettipher, 2005 ). This system should make provision for all these different learning styles of learners.
This system also needs to move away from the apartheid system that accommodated English more than anything. Schools now need to embrace the diversity of cultures and languages within our society by finding a way to accommodate each and every learner, no matter their background or culture. At the same time they need to help learners realize the continued importance of developing their English language skills. This can be done through the use of appropriate reading materials, writing skills and appropriate teaching methodology. Thirdly, this system should be one that accommodates the diversity of learners within our society and community.
In this case, teachers need to be given more time to plan their teaching activities to include a diversity of learners (Landsberg, 2011). Not only do teachers need to be given more time to plan their teaching activities but they also need helpers or additional teacher assistants (also called classroom assistants) who can support them in teaching a diversity of learners as well as support from specialized people for advice and guidance (Landsberg, 2011). Teachers also need administrative support as well as adequate learning support materials and assistive devices appropriate for the needs of learners with disabilities (Landsberg, 2011).
This system can only be successful in improving the educational outcomes of children of school going age if teachers are given all the support they need to deal with the different kinds of learners within the different schools. Government also needs to invest in teachers by sending them to training centers that will adequately equip them with the required skills and knowledge necessary for them to cope in their diverse school environments. REFERENCE LIST Douglas, J. (2005). Transformation of the South African schooling system. Teacher Professionalism and Education Transformation.
Braamfontein: The Centre for Education Policy Development. Duma, M. (1995). Community Involvement in Rural schools in Pietermaritzburg Area. (Masters’ Thesis, University of South Africa. ). Education in South Africa. Retrieved October 19, 2005 from www. southafrica. info/ess_info/saglance. education/education. htm Erasmus, BJ, Loedolff, PvZ, Mda, T & Nel, PS. (2009). Managing training and development in South Africa (5th ed. ). Cape Town: Oxford. Finnermore, M. (2009). Introduction to Labour Relations in South Africa (10th ed. ). Durban: Butterworths. Holford, L. Ziervogel, C. & Smith C. (2001). Child and adolescent psychiatry. In B. Robertson, C. Allwood, C. A. Cagiano. (Eds). Textbook of Psychiatry for Southern Africa (1st ed) Cape Town: Oxford University Press. (pp. 282 – 321). Landsberg, E. (2011). (Ed. ). Addressing Barriers to Learning: A South African Perspective. Pretoria: Van Schaik Publishers. (pp. 69-85). Mabokela, R. O. (2000). Voices of conflict: Desegregating South African universities. New York, Routledge Falmer. Sedibe, M. (2011). Inequality of Access to Resources in Previously Disadvantaged South African High Schools.
The Journal of Social Science, 28(2), 129-135. Seroto, J. (2004). The impact of South African Legislation (1948 – 2004) on Black Education in Rural Areas: A Historical Educational Perspective. (Doctoral dissertation, University of South Africa. ). Swart, E. , & Pettipher, R. (2005). A framework for understanding inclusion. In E. Landsberg, D. Kruger & N. Nel (Eds). Addressing barriers to learning: A South African perspective. Pretoria: Van Schaik Publishers. (pp. 3-23). Tedla, E. (1995). Sankofa: African thought and education. New York, NY: Peter Lang.

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
Educational Psychology Essay Critical Analysis
Just from $13/Page
Order Essay
Place your order
(550 words)

Approximate price: $22

Calculate the price of your order

550 words
We'll send you the first draft for approval by September 11, 2018 at 10:52 AM
Total price:
The price is based on these factors:
Academic level
Number of pages
Basic features
  • Free title page and bibliography
  • Unlimited revisions
  • Plagiarism-free guarantee
  • Money-back guarantee
  • 24/7 support
On-demand options
  • Writer’s samples
  • Part-by-part delivery
  • Overnight delivery
  • Copies of used sources
  • Expert Proofreading
Paper format
  • 275 words per page
  • 12 pt Arial/Times New Roman
  • Double line spacing
  • Any citation style (APA, MLA, Chicago/Turabian, Harvard)

Our guarantees

Delivering a high-quality product at a reasonable price is not enough anymore.
That’s why we have developed 5 beneficial guarantees that will make your experience with our service enjoyable, easy, and safe.

Money-back guarantee

You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.

Read more

Zero-plagiarism guarantee

Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.

Read more

Free-revision policy

Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.

Read more

Privacy policy

Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.

Read more

Fair-cooperation guarantee

By sending us your money, you buy the service we provide. Check out our terms and conditions if you prefer business talks to be laid out in official language.

Read more
Live Chat+1(978) 822-0999EmailWhatsApp

Order your essay today and save 20% with the discount code LEMONADE