School teacher, scholar, administrator, teacher educator and public advocate for education, John Goodlad has been an eloquent spokesperson for the need for reform in public education, strategies which if implemented will bring about that reform, and for the central role of the teacher in the school improvement process.
Born in British Columbia, John Goodlad received his teaching certificate from the Normal School in Vancouver in 1939. He then commenced his remaskable educational career, which has now spanned 53 years, in a one room, eight-grade school in Surmey, B.C. He soon became a principal there, and shortly after that, he was appointed as Director of Education for the Provincial Industrial School for Delinquent Boys.
While pursuing his teaching career, he also continued to study. He earned the B.A. and M.A. degrees from U.B.C. in 1945 and 1946 respectively, and the Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1949. Dr. Goodlad began the American phase of his career at Emory University that same year, and for the next ten years he was intimately involved with teacher education, first as Director of the Division of Teacher Education at Emory and from 1956 until 1960 as Director of the Centre of Teacher Education at Chicago. In 1960 he moved to Los Angeles where for the next 25 years he played leading roles as Director of the University Elementary School, Dean of the Graduate School of Education at UCLA, and Director of Research for the Institute for Development of Educational Activities. In 1985, he moved to the University of Washington where since 1986 he has been the Director of the Centre of Educational Renewal.
Dr. Goodlad has devoted substantial time and attention during his career to educational associations. It would take too long to list all of them but a sampling would include terms as President of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, President of the American Educational Research Association, Board member of the UNESCO Institute for Education, Senior Fellow at the Charles F. Kettering Foundation, Board Member of the Encyclopedia Britannica Educational Corporation, Member of the President’s Task Force on Early Education, and Member of the President's Task Force on Education of the Gifted.
His editorial board work has included terms for such prestigious publications as the American Educational Research Journal, International Review of Education, Journal of Teacher Education, and The Review of Education.
While his teaching, administrative and service activities has been distinguished, it has been through his writings that he has had his most significant impact. Since 1956, he has written or co-authored 29 books, 5 of which have been award winning; 90 chapters and papers for other books and yearbooks; and approximately 150 articles in various journals and encyclopedias.
In 1959 his co-authored text titled The Nongraded Elementary School was translated into Japanese, Italian, Hebrew, and Spanish. In 1984 Dr. Goodlad produced A Place Called School: Prospects for the Future which received the AERA 1985 Outstanding Book Award, and the First Distinguished Book-of-the-Year Award from Kappa Delta Pi. This book based on nation-wide research effort represents his most complete vision on how schools should be changed.
After 1984, one might have concluded that he would have been content to rest on his accomplishments. Instead, however, he returned to one of his first interests (he had been a staffer on Conant's 1963 work on the preparation of American teachers), and initiated a major new project on teacher education. This project has produced three books - Teachers for our Nation's Schools, Places Where Teachers are Taught and The Moral Dimensions of Teaching. Goodlad's ambition was to have the same impact on teacher education as the Flexner Report did for medical education in the early part of the century. The 19 postulates or standards to be met if a teacher education program is to be considered exemplary are being studied and scrutinized by teacher education institutions all over the world, and of course we at the University of Manitoba are no exception.
Dr. Goodlad is listed in The Canadian Who's Who, The International Directory of Distinguished Leadership, Who's Who in America, The Blue Book, The Writer's Directory, and The International Who's Who, and he is the recipient of honorary degrees from ten Canadian and American universities.
Mr. Chancellor, it is an honour and personal pleasure for me to ask, in the name of the Senate of the University of Manitoba, that you confer on John I. Goodlad, the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.
-citation delivered by Arnold Naimark, President, University of Manitoba