Is Teaching a Science or an Art | B.Ed first year/BICT first semester note

Teaching is the process of facilitating the learners in order to achieve the expected learning outcomes with the assistant of teachers. Since teaching is a very complex phenomenon, there lies controversy about whether teaching is science or art. However, there are two views on the nature of teaching.

  1. Teaching as a science
  2. Teaching as an art

What is science?

Science is the study about the laws behind nature, natural things, and natural beings. Science is the systematic study of all natural phenomena.

Laws of science are developed through empirical (derived from experiment and observation) investigation in controlled conditions so that these laws can be generalized in other similar conditions. Laws of science are based on cause and effect relationships.

Characteristics of Teaching as a Science

The following characteristics support that teaching is a science;

  1. Systematic
  2. Empirical
  3. Controlled
  4. Cause and effect relationship
  5. Generalized theories
  6. Prediction

1. Systematic

Teaching is a systematic process. Teaching and learning takes place in a systematic manner. Activities of Teaching are systematized to achieve the objectives of teaching lesson.

2. Empirical

Teaching is based on empirical (based on observation sense organs) experiences. The teacher empirically designs his/her activities to achieve the goal of a lesson and students also build their knowledge through the empirical experience (based on observation by sense organs)

Controlled

Teaching is a controlled activity. Teaching takes place in a definite environment when the disturbing factors are controlled. Learning develops as the outcome of teaching in a controlled environment

Cause and Effect Relationship

There is a distinct cause and effect relationship in teaching i.e. “What happens when ? “ can be predicted. Teachers can predict the amount of learning of students on the basis of cause and effect relationships. Such relationships make teaching a science.

Generalized theories

Teaching consists of some theories which can be generalized to any place of time. Such theories are in the form of generalizations or rules.

For example;

  • ‘Rewarding increases the rate of learning.’
  • ‘Practices increases the retention of learning’

Such generalized theories make teaching a science.

Prediction

A future consequence of teaching can be predicted on the basis of theories or generalizations of teaching. For example; it can be predicted that ‘use of instructional materials increases the amount of understanding.’ This theory or generalization can be used for the successful prediction of that educative process in which instructional material is used.

What is art?

Art is a skillful job. Art is a creation of beautiful things. Aesthetic work in which someone creates something, which looks charming and beautiful. Creative work in which someone produces something which is unique. Art provides pleasure to those who create and observe it. Art is an enjoying work.

Characteristics of Teaching as an Art

The following characteristics entail that teaching is an art;

  1. A skillful job
  2. An aesthetic job
  3. A creative work
  4. A pleasant work

1. A skillful job

Teaching is a skillful job. The need for skill for teaching makes it an art. The skill of teaching is related to:

  • The skill of motivation,
  • The skill of presentation of skill,
  • Organizing teaching & learning process
  • Preparing and presenting instructional materials
  • The skill of using blackboard
  • The skill of evaluating, etc.
  • Every teacher differs regarding teaching skills.

2. An Aesthetic Job

An aesthetic job is a job that is full of a sense of beauty. Teaching is a beautiful job. A skillful teacher can make the whole class spellbound (fascinate) where all students listen carefully and internalize the sayings of the teacher. Students become active to learn the lesson. Such acts of the teacher have a sense of beauty.

3. A Creative Work

Teaching is creative work. The skill of teachers in teaching may be unique and they can uniquely present their lessons. Teachers can invent new methods of teaching, a new type of instructional materials, new methods of motivation, etc. by using their creativity. A creative teacher is always a good teacher.

4. A Pleasant Job 

Teaching provides pleasure both to the teacher and the learner. It makes learning more pleasant. Students can enjoy the teaching & learning process with a skillful teacher. Teaching also provides satisfaction to both learners and teachers.

In conclusion

Teaching is neither mere science nor an art. All the discussions above also suggest the same thing. Therefore, it is needless to say that teaching is both science and art.

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