Washington State University Distinguished Professor A.G. Rud has been announced as the new president of the Philosophy of Education Society (PES), an international forum that promotes the philosophical treatment of educational practice, policy, and research.
Rud, a faculty member in the College of Education’s Cultural Studies and Social Thought in Education program, and past chair of the WSU Faculty Senate, has long been recognized as a thought leader in the history and philosophy of education, including higher education and educational leadership.
“Philosophers of education ask what are usually termed big questions, about meaning, significance, and purpose,” Rud said. “We have all gone about getting ‘an education’ but what is education? This is not a question that many educators might ask, but they would if they thought as philosophically as they did as children.”
Rud said everyone is capable of philosophical thought, especially as children when we wondered and asked lots of questions.
“I do not care if someone uses the word ‘philosophy’ or has read Plato, we all have philosophical views on education,” Rud said.
Rud gave an example of schools banning discussion of sex education or critical race theory.
“Should education be regulated by the government, or should curriculum be based on a child’s age, and so forth? These all depend on how we define schools, learning, and childhood,” he said. “Such definitional efforts are philosophical, but it is impossible to study education without a philosophical viewpoint.”
As part of his yearlong duties with PES, he will preside over the organization’s annual meeting in Salt Lake City in 2024.