Response to Discussion Forum: Humanism Essay Example

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Humanism believes that human thinking and learning is not driven by creation of new knowledge but rather, it is through growth. It is a conventional methodology of teaching and has gained much attention in the field of research. However, lack of a theoretical basis and the limitations it holds, humanism is not appropriate to use in teaching a class of people with different cultural backgrounds and social settings

I would agree that the humanist approach is an important teaching pedagogy, but not suitable to teach students who have no self-motivation. In fact the modern psychology advocate less humanistic approach to teach English to ESL learners (MacIntyre & Mercer, 2014). There are students whose learning process is facilitated by self-motivation. That is, curiosity drives their level of understanding. The most important feature of humanism is that a significant degree of autonomy s given to the learner. This way, he is able to develop the intellectual ability to make critical decisions independently. Therefore, humanism is appropriate where leaners share a common trait of having the desire to know much in details.

However, from a cognitive development , the brain development of an individual takes into account the factors surrounding his or her development. The ability to think is influenced by the level of education and the environment in which the person is sourcing information (Abraham, 2014). For instance, if a person grows and develops in a family that encourages autonomy, then there is likeliness that that person will be able to make dent decision during adulthood. Similarly, education is a factor that influences the thinking ability. Even with self-motivation, lack of an educational background or structure inhibits human’s critical thinking. Education improves the reasoning ability since one obtains a lot of information which can be useful in decision making process.

Overall, humanism is only relevant where students are ready to learn. However, its most important feature, that is autonomy, has been incorporated in other student-oriented techniques such as process writing. Independence is vital but there has to be the right source of information to ensure that the right thinking is achieved.


Abraham, A. (2014). Creative thinking as orchestrated by semantic processing vs. cognitive control brain networks. Frontiers in human neuroscience8.

MacIntyre, P. D., & Mercer, S. (2014). Introducing positive psychology to SLA. Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching4(2), 153-172.