Firstly we need to know what a paradigm is. A paradigm is a belief system or can even be seen as a system theory that guides the way we do things which can range from thought patterns to actions. Discipline can also be guided through a paradigm and through research you read in your subject, you will begin to classify, through the methodology the kind of paradigm that is used. It is important to know where your discipline belongs, that there are different ways of viewing the world and that your move towards knowledge is one of many. We have different paradigms for different categories. In education we focus on behaviourism and positivism which is part of modernism and also then postmodernism. The behaviourism paradigm teaches us that we learn based on how we interact with our environment, the decisions that we make have direct consequences which will affect our decision making. The positivist paradigm asserts that real events can be observed empirically and explained with logical investigation The measure for evaluating the authority of a scientific theory is whether our knowledge claims are steady with the information we are able to gain using our senses (Leong 2008). Modernism is based on the belief that science has and will improve our lives. Many believe that science does everything, cure diseases, helps with farming, and has provided us with a technological world such as digital gadgets, schools, cars, dstv etc. Modernism believes that the world is ruled by reason and technology (Smith & Higgs 2006). Lastly there is postmodernism which is said to be the opposite of modernism, postmodernism tells us that we must rethink our beliefs in science. Postmodernism tells us what our world actually is (Smith & Higgs 2006).
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