Five Educational Psychology Books You Should Read

· December 18, 2018

Educational psychology studies the behavior and cognitive processes linked to educational settings. The studies researchers have carried out in this area provide us with strategies and tools that can help us create an ideal educational system. Despite being a little-known discipline in mainstream society, it has great potential. We can learn about this potential by reading the best books on educational psychology.

Many theorists have contributed to this branch of psychology. The books we talk about in this article are written within a common framework based on social constructivism. This theoretical perspective is important because it helps us understand education from its broadest points.

The Unschooled Mind by Howard Gardner

The book’s subtitle is: “How children think and how schools should teach”. This book explains children’s intuitive theories. Above all, it focuses on the importance of breaking away from previous teaching methods in order to achieve true learning.

It’s one of the essential books on educational psychology. It allows us to see that current teaching methods rarely succeed. Rather, they focus on memorization and superficial learning.

Due to this teaching style, students develop a form of “doublethink”. This means students respond to problems appropriately in academic contexts, but they go back to their uninformed theories for real-life situations.

Howard Gardner is a renowned theorist on educational psychology.

This book is especially important because Gardner backs his conclusions with many experiments and research. Additionally, he also introduces us to an extensive bibliography that supports his interpretations of the results.

Psychology and Pedagogy by Vigotsky, Luria, and Leontiev

Even though the cover bears the names of Vigotsky, Luria, and Leontiev, this book is actually a compilation of reports from many authors. This book shows us a revolutionary educational system which is completely different from what we’re used to in today’s society.

These psychologists believe that education shouldn’t be motivated by economic forces. The objective of education shouldn’t be to produce a labor force. For them, education is a tool to develop an individual’s intellectual potential.

Because it helps break away from dogmas, this is one of the best books on educational psychology. It presents many studies that back up its argument: that classrooms without hierarchies, where open debate and individualized instruction are prioritized, lead to incredible results.

Chomsky on Mis-Education by Noam Chomsky

Some may say this book isn’t part of the other educational psychology books. That’s because it’s about the political aspects of education. Nevertheless, it’s a book that can help you understand education in the broad sense of the word. Noam Chomsky offers us an insight that’s definitely worth reading.

In this book, Chomsky explains how the system uses education to keep itself stable. He details his thoughts on the current educational system’s faults, which may not be faults at all for some people. That’s because they allow the system to keep itself frozen in a stable power structure that keeps every individual in their place.

Chomsky uses the United States’ actions in Latin America as an example. He shares that propaganda and the media help to distort the reality of events. Propaganda makes the United States look like a messenger of justice and truth.

Noam Chomsky is a renowned theorist on educational psychology.

The Culture of Education by Jerome Bruner

Bruner is one of the theorists that started a revolution in cognitive psychology. His studies paved the way for abandoning extremely mechanical and computational perspectives. He promoted a sociocultural view of the facts. This author understood that if you want to understand human beings, you can’t separate them from their social environment.

In this book, we find a detailed explanation of the social constructivist perspective of education. It shows us how important cultural framework is and how it influences different educational systems. It’s a very interesting perspective, as it helps us understand how these influences affect education.

This is a fundamental book because it teaches us how culture and education create our reality. It also presents the idea that both culture and education form are the engines for social change.

Experience and Education by John Dewey

John Dewey was one of the fathers of educational psychology. Despite the fact that his works are around 100 years old, they hold some revolutionary ideas about education.

In Experience and Education, the author shows us a reconstruction of the educational models of his day based on a constructivist paradigm. His educational model puts the spotlight on a concept that’s at the heart of his pedagogical thoughts: the continuity of experience. For him, education is only correct when it promotes future educational experience. If education involves stagnation, then it’s not education.

Experience and Education is one of the best educational psychology books. Despite the fact that it has a limited range, it criticizes traditional and progressive educational models.

Why read books on educational psychology?

You should definitely read these books on education psychology if you want to learn more about it. They’ll also familiarize you with the author’s proposals for quality education.