The potential of Christopher Alexander's theory and practice of wholeness: clues for developing an educational taxonomy


This is a paper about how to transfer design patterns from architecture and software engineering to education. It is about the nature of pedagogical patterns – what specific structures they have – and about the potential of Christopher Alexander’s theory and practice of wholeness as a theoretical starting point for classifying them to develop an educational taxonomy. It is about understanding computer scientists and pedagogues who try to define patterns and pattern languages suitable for educational needs. Analyzing an exemplary educational scenario this contribution will compare the ability of three different ways of description. Demonstrating the applicability of Alexander’s fifteen properties of living centers in education the authors intend to open discussion and reflection about the important role of an educational taxonomy for classifying existing pedagogical patterns.