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Inquiry education

Inquiry education (sometimes known as the inquiry method) is a student-centered method of education focused on asking questions. Students are encouraged to ask questions which are meaningful to them, and which do not necessarily have easy answers; teachers are encouraged to avoid speaking at all when this is possible, and in any case to avoid giving answers in favor of asking more questions. The method was advocated by Neil Postman and Charles Weingartner in their book Teaching as a Subversive Activity.

The inquiry method is motivated by Postman's and Weingartner's recognition that the activities and behaviors of intelligent people ("good learners") at all stages in life focuses on the process of inquiry, not an end product of static knowledge. They write that certain characteristics are common to all good learners (Teaching as a Subversive Activity, pp. 31-33), saying that all good learners have:

In an attempt to instill students with these qualities and behaviors, a teacher adhering to the inquiry method in pedagogy must behave very differently from a traditional teacher. Postman and Weingartner suggest that inquiry teachers have the following characteristics (pp. 34-37):

See also

Educational philosophy -- Pedagogy -- School reform -- Neil Postman