Aristotle’s Aim of Education
His view about the aim of education was different from that of his predecessors Socrates and Plato. He believed in the purposefulness of education. According to Socrates and Plato, ‘the aim of education is to attain knowledge‘.
To them the attainment of knowledge was necessary both for the interest of the individual and the society, hence it was virtue by itself. Aristotle has a different view. To him the aim of education was not only the attainment of knowledge but also the attainment of happiness or goodness in life. He believed that virtue lies in the attainment of happiness or goodness. He has divided ‘goodness’ into two categories ‘goodness’ of intellect and goodness of character. The former can be produced and increased by teaching and is the product of training and experience. The latter is the result of habit, and it can be attained by the formation of good habits.
Aristotle’s definition of education is the same as that of his teachers, that is, “the creation of a sound mind in a sound body”. Thus to him the aim of education was the welfare of the individuals so as to bring happiness in their lives.