Meaning and scope of Comparative Education

Comparative education is an interdisciplinary course as it borrows ideas from other subjects. As a course of study, it has reasons for being taught by teachers and being learnt by the students.

It also satisfies the need to understand education systems are explained or understood by surrounding contextual forces which shape them. Conversely, if education systems are also shaped by the societal matrix in which they are embedded (and if education systems, in turn, shape societies and cultures) then the comparative study of education systems also fosters an understanding of cultures or societies.

In comparative education, we study and compare educational resources, facilities, culture and other factors that affect the educational scenario of one nation to another. Besides it also facilitates the planning of educational programs, curricula, teaching methods and activities.

It is also helpful in providing information how to improve educational assessment and evaluation.

Define Scope of Comparative Education

1)Salient features of education-Every country of the world has its own national system of education and they possess certain unique features. Comparative education studies the salient features of various national system of the world.

2. Educational structure -Every national system of education has its own structure and the educational structure varies from nation to nation Comparative education studies the varies educational structure of the nation.

3.Constitutional Provision- Comparative education studies about the constitutional provisions of different nations regarding education

4.Similarities and dissimilarities: Comparative education studies the similarities and dissimilarities that exists among different national systems of education.

5. Objectives of education at different level: Comparative education studies the aims and objectives of different levels of education.

6.Curriculum: Comparative education studies about the curriculum that are prescribed at different levels of different national system of education

7. Method of teaching: Teaching methods are helpful to make the teaching-learning process effective and fruitful of subject matter. Thus, various teaching methods which are applied at different education in different national education systems are also studied by comparative education.

8.Management and Administration: Finance management and administration is very much necessary for smooth running of education system. Comparative education studies different educational management and administrative systems of the nations.

Five perspectives that capture the scope of comparative education

1)The subject matter and content covers the essential components of educational systems such as structure, aims, content or curriculum, administration, financing, teacher education.

2)Geographical units of study comprises intra-national, international, regional, continental and global or world systems studies and analysis.

3)Ideological scope  compares nation’s educational systems on the basis of different political, social and economic ideologies. For example, democratic, communism, socialist, capitalist, free market and mixed economies.

4)Thematic scope  targets on educational themes, topical issues or problems and compares them within one or more geographical units. For example free primary and secondary education, universal primary education, education for all and universal higher education.

5)The historical or spatial scope deals with the study of the historical development of the discipline from the earliest (pre-historic) phase known as the period of Travellers’ Tales to the modern phase known as the period of social science perspectives.

The most basic utility of comparative education is to describe education systems/learning communities, within their social context, in order to satisfy the yearning for knowledge which is t of human nature.