Pedagogical hermeneutics (2017/2018)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Daniele Loro
Daniele Loro
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Sem. IIA, Sem. IIB

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

Educational objectives in relation to the professional profile of the pedagogue
The general educational purpose of teaching Ermeneutica pedagogica, in relation to the professional profile of the educator and the pedagogue, is to deepen the meaning of education, which is thought to be a great experience of "interpretation" and preceded and followed by a similar interpretative experience that happens every time a pedagogical reflection is made. Hence, the need for those who work in the field of education or reflects in pedagogical terms on it is to deepen the theme of hermeneutics and its multiple historical and philosophical articulations. Therefore, the general educational purpose is both of a cognitive and reflective nature, and of a methodological and operational nature, in that it urges the educator and the pedagogue to pay particular attention when at different stages of the educational activity emerges in the foreground the "interpretative" element, which invokes the interpreter (educator or pedagogist) to a greater understanding and consequently more effective planning and operational competence.
The fact that education can also be thought "also" as an interpretive experience explains the birth of this discipline, which lies within the historical relationship between education, pedagogy and philosophy, from which the disciplinary horizon represented by the "philosophy of education", of which pedagogical hermeneutics can be considered as a particular articulation and a specific cognitive deepening.
From the point of view of its cognitive status, pedagogical hermeneutics can be thought of as a form of "hermeneutics applied", that is, as a specific hermeneutical cognitive mode, referring to the educational and pedagogical field. Its application dimension will seek to clarify the assumptions and the different operational possibilities.

Specific educational objectives
On the basis of the "general" educational goal above, the course aims to achieve some "specific" learning goals expressed in the form of expected learning outcomes.

1) Knowledge and understanding skills.
At the end of the lessons the student will have to show that education can also be thought of as the result of an "experience of interpretation". Therefore, the student must show that he knows what it means to interpret, to know the history of hermeneutics (not just philosophical), and to understand the need for his reformulation in pedagogical terms. In connection with this, at the end of the course, the student will have a sufficient level of knowledge of hermeneutics, knowing that it is adequately contextualized in the context of his history, with particular regard to contemporary authors and contemporaries who have characterized him 'evolution.

2) Knowledge and understanding applied to educational and pedagogical work.
At the end of the lessons the student will have to show that he "translates" the acquired learning into the ability to understand, interpret, explain and communicate both a specific educational experience and "texts" and works of an educational value (eg books, paintings, pictures, films, other artistic and literary expressions). In this way, at the end of the course, the student will be able to integrate such knowledge, seemingly far from their own horizon because they refer to existential "distant" contexts within their own formative, cultural and professional baggage.

3) Autonomy of judgment.
At the end of the lessons, the student must demonstrate that they have the essential elements to start elaborating in a personal way a hermeneutical model, considered the most suitable to interpret the educational experience, respecting the constituent characteristics of the latter. At the same time, the student will be aware of having to enrich their research and action skills, assessing their cognitive possibilities and possible limitations.

4) Communicative Skills.
At the end of the lessons the student will have to show that he has expanded and deepened his linguistic and communicative skills, thanks to the acquisition of the thematic and conceptual heritage which is precisely of hermeneutics in general and pedagogical in particular.

5) Ability to continue learning.
At the end of the lessons the student should have understood that the hermeneutic approach to knowledge and its consequent translation into practical action necessitates an attitude of constant availability to always new experiences of comprehension and interpretation, aimed at reaching a vision as well as as complete as possible, faithful and appropriate to the educational reality we are dealing with. Hence the contribution to strengthening the idea of a permanent formation and an opening to research and professional, cultural and interdisciplinary dialogue.


The "general" part of the program presents the basic disciplinary content, aimed at achieving the expected training objectives.
From the didactic point of view, learning the basic disciplinary content concerns directly the first two training objectives; Successive goals are pursued indirectly both through content learning and through classroom activity.
1. Education as a hermeneutic problem
2. Definition of "hermeneutics" and elements of history of ancient and medieval hermeneutics
3. Genesis of modern hermeneutics and its climax in the theories of Schleiermacher and Dilthey
4. The hermeneutics of the twentieth century in Germany and France: Heidegger, Gadamer, Ricoeur
5. The hermeneutics of the twentieth century in Italy; Betti, Pareyson, Vattimo
6. From philosophical hermeneutics to pedagogical hermeneutics, understood as "applied hermeneutics"

The "monographic" part of the program presents an in-depth analysis of the methodological and applicative dimension of pedagogical hermeneutics.
From a didactic point of view, it in particular contributes to deepening the acquisition of the second, third and fifth training objectives.
1. Formulation of the methodological elements of pedagogical hermeneutics, both in educational practice and pedagogical reflection
2. Experiences of pedagogical hermeneutics in the interpretation of texts, paintings, images, movies, music, and more.

Teaching Mode
In the first part of the course the lessons will have a predominantly frontal character, but within them will be favored interventions, questions and short debates on topics from time to time addressed. In the second part, didactic activity will have a more participatory and laboratory, operational and colloquial character, particularly in the hermeneutic approach to the material to be interpreted.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
D. LORO "Fare ermeneutica pedagogica". Elementi metodologici e operativi (Dispensa) 2019
R. BACH Il gabbiano Jonathan Livingston Rizzoli, Milano 2012
A. DE SAINT-EXUPERY Il piccolo principe Bompiani, Milano 2005
D. LORO, Interpretare l'educazione, Introduzione all'ermeneutica pedagogica (Edizione 1) Edizioni Libreria Cortina, Verona 2016 9788877491978
PLUTARCO L'arte di ascoltare Arnoldo Mondadori, Milano 1995
M. ENDE Momo (Edizione 2) SEI, Torino 2011 9788805072385

Assessment methods and criteria

Exam Mode
The examination will take place in oral form and will be divided into two phases:
a) verifying the level of learning of the content of the program in relation to the specific training objectives. The evaluation of the oral test will focus on verifying the level of learning of what is specified in the specific training objectives. The questions will be of a descriptive type (to test content learning and understanding), of argument type (to test the ability to link and self-reflection on the content) and application type (to test the ability to think in concrete terms and operating the theoretical contents studied).
b) Presentation of a written report on the methodological objectives and material studied in relation to a practical experience of hermeneutics applied to education and pedagogical thinking. The report will be compiled according to the compositional scheme indicated by the teacher and will be sent to the teacher 7 days before the date set for the exam.

To ensure the connection, as required by the "Diploma Supplement" (Diploma Supplement) document, between the Examination Program and the academic year in which the student submits the exam, and since each year the course program it is scientifically and didactically suitable for students enrolled in the academic years preceding to take the exam by carrying out the program of the current academic year, except for serious and motivated reasons, to be communicated in each case and beforehand to the teacher who will decide on the request.

Texts for the exam

For the general part: it is compulsory for all, attending and non-attending, the following two texts:
- D. Loro, Interpret education. Introduction to Educational Hearing, Verona ed. Libreria Cortina, 2016.
- D. Loro, "Make hermeneutic pedagogical". Methodological and operational elements, Lecture 2017-2018 (the text will be available only at the end of the course at the Ateneo stationery, Lungadige Porta Vittoria, 37.

For the monographic part and in-depth it is mandatory to choose one of the following texts:
- R. Bach, The Gull Jonathan Livingston, trad. Milan, ed. Rizzoli, various editions.
- A. De Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince, trad., Milan, ed. Bompiani, 2005 or other editions
- M. Ende, Momo, Torino, trad. it., ed. SEI, 2011, 6th reprint of 2014.
- Plutarch, The Art of Listening, trad., Milan, ed. Arnoldo Mondadori, 1995 and subsequent editions. Text can also be downloaded from the internet.
- Other texts may be indicated in lesson.