Advocacy in Education

Mike W. Martin

in Meaningful Work

Published in print March 2000 | ISBN: 9780195133257
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199848706 | DOI:

Series: Practical and Professional Ethics

Advocacy in Education

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The advocacy issue raises perennial concerns about good teaching and professional ethics in higher education. It also provides an interesting area in which to explore how the personal ideals of professionals shape their daily work. This chapter argues that professional responsibilities justify advocating personal ideals and value commitments pertinent to a professor's discipline (which includes its interdisciplinary dimensions). These responsibilities are precisely the ones emphasized in the consensus paradigm, namely, the shared duties incumbent on all professors. Accordingly, shared duties can actually imply personal commitments in professors' work rather than ruling them out. If much advocacy is both desirable and inevitable, the challenge is to distinguish acceptable from unacceptable forms, especially in the gray area of undue influence where inappropriate pressures distort the learning process without amounting to overt coercion, indoctrination, or proselytizing. This chapter also considers truth, autonomy, and authority as they relate to advocacy.

Keywords: advocacy; professional ethics; higher education; professors; autonomy; personal ideals; professional responsibilities; consensus paradigm

Chapter.  6866 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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