Compare and Contrast the Basic Philosophy of Idealism and Realism with Respect to Education

Compare and contrast the basic philosophy of idealism and realism with respect to education

Philosophy and education are closely related. The term philosophy has been derived from two Greek words- Philo means “love” and Sophie means “wisdom”. Philosophy means love of wisdom. Education is a part of philosophy. Education and philosophy differ in nature. While education is practical, philosophy is theoretical. Education is a planned activity with aims and goals of its own. As said by Thomas Ogwara,

“Philosophy points out to the society what. . . is to be achieved through education.”

Philosophy helps in determining how the goals can be achieved. Philosophy sets goals and education works on fulfilling them. The aims of education depend on the aim of life. Philosophy is crucial in education as well as in life. 

Comparison between Idealism and Realism as Education 

i). Both are philosophical views of looking at life. 

ii). In both schools of philosophy, humans have access to material and non-material things. 

iii). Both deal with the connection between a human mind and the world. 

Contrast between Idealism and Realism as Education 

i). Idealism looks at things in the perfect way. Realism looks at things in a practical way and how it actually is. 

ii). Idealism focuses on what it could be and realism focuses on what it actually is.

iii). Idealism states that the situations we face is shaped by our own ideas whereas realism looks at the situation as it is with absence of personal ideas. 

iv). Idealists do not look for faults and shortcomings in anyone or anything. On the other hand, realists see these things and plan on how to overcome these difficulties. 

v). Realists are more goal oriented than idealists who have goals but fail to put it into action. 

vi). Idealists have a more positive approach towards life than idealists. 


Idealism and Realism are two different ways of looking at life. Both philosophies have their own set of beliefs and values. The two are apart from each other but are equally important for living and viewing life. Both schools of thought are needed for the world to function.

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