Defense Date

6-18-2012

Graduation Date

2012

Availability

Immediate Access

Submission Type

dissertation

Degree Name

PhD

Department

Communication and Rhetorical Studies

School

McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts

Committee Chair

Janie Harden Fritz

Committee Member

Ronald Arnett

Committee Member

Kathleen Glenister-Roberts

Keywords

Communication theory, Educational policy, Education crisis, Education reform, Paradigm, Pedagogy

Abstract

This project examines the communicative structure of the contemporary rhetoric of crisis and reform narrative dominating public conversation about education, as a post-industrial body of discourse deeply embedded in historical ideals for a mass system of public education. In challenging the crisis-centered narrative, this work seeks to identify historical discourse strands that have shaped thinking and action in the construction of educational policy, legislation, administration and pedagogy. This work evaluates the misalignment in the assumptions which guide the perception that an academic relationship exists between higher education and secondary school which is in contrast to the original purpose for a mass system of public education. In part, this research is a response to discourse that applies responsibility to colleges and universities in the ongoing rhetoric of crisis and reform calls for greater accountability and assessments as a means by which the problems of education may be reversed. It is the position of this research that these systems are not aligned yet increasingly, public discussions about educational failures assume that secondary school is the preparatory ground for the transition to higher learning.

Format

PDF

Language

English

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