An inquiry into Steiner Graduate Outcomes in Australia and New Zealand: The role played by ‘subjectification’ in Steiner pedagogy
In our research project we explored attitudes of Steiner Waldorf alumni and graduates to their education. We explored features they valued and whether they felt that their education had delivered on their expectations and needs. A further key question focused on their views of the role of anthroposophy in Steiner Waldorf education. In reviewing our findings, certain thematic topics resonated through the graduates’ reflections: we found that their education had in some way defined their sense of themselves and their identity. Graduates expressed that their capacities, and the values and beliefs that shape who they are today, in their personal, career and social lives were strongly moulded by their schooling experiences. We were intrigued to discover a strong correspondence between the features they valued the most and the core ‘Pedagogical Values’ of Wisdom, Life, Love, and Voice as characterised by Gidley (2009, 2016, 2022) and applied as guiding principles in the Australian Steiner Curriculum Framework (SEA, 2011; Haralambous, 2018). In this article we review the graduates’ comments on the formation of their values and sense of self-identity through the lens of Steiner’s (1894/1964) philosophy of ethical individualism and Biesta’s (2022) idea of subjectification.
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