A critical theory perspective on program development

Stephen Brookfield, John Holst

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

3 Scopus citations


The dominant modes of program planning in the field of adult education are drawn from three intellectual traditions: humanistic psychology, progressivism, and behaviorism. This chapter proposes a model of program planning drawn from a different intellectual framework, the tradition of European critical social theory. Articulated by the Frankfurt School of Social Theory, a critical perspective emphasizes the role of adult education programming in fostering social movements for democratic social change. The chapter specifies the organizing principles and specific goals of a critical theory approach to program development and poses a number of questions that can be asked to determine the success of such an initiative.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAndragogical and Pedagogical Methods for Curriculum and Program Development
PublisherIGI Global
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781466658738
ISBN (Print)146665872X, 9781466658721
StatePublished - Mar 31 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Social Sciences


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