Dr. Trevor Norris
Department of Theory and Policy Studies in Education
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at The University of Toronto
252 Bloor Street West
Toronto, ON M5S 1V6
In his teaching and research, Trevor Norris focuses on the intersection of education, politics and philosophy as they relate to current issues in culture including consumerism, commercialism, and commodification.
A 2011 book with University of Toronto Press, “Consuming Schools”, investigates the origins and nature of consumerism within Western political, pedagogical and philosophical thought and its current impact on the public and democratic functions of education, with a variety of cases drawn from current trends in school commercialism. Modernist and postmodernist approaches help illuminate the contrasting features of consumerism and how it impacts teaching and learning. Recent appearances on CBC and other media have been concerned with the sponsorship of TDSB classrooms by ‘Future Shop’, and published as “The Illusory Solution: Is Commercialization The "Future" Of Education at the Toronto District School Board?” Our Schools/ Ourselves (2009), and earlier in Educational Researcher: “School Commercialism and the Fate of Public Schooling: What’s “Good” for America?”.A second key research area is regarding high school philosophy in Ontario and beyond. Ongoing research into the teaching and learning of philosophy in Ontario public schools, studied by over 30,000 students per year, has culminated in the approval of several new courses in philosophy teacher education at OISE. Current investigations into teachers’ conceptions of the aims of philosophy education, as well as debates in the emergent field of teacher education in philosophy, have positioned OISE as a potential global leader in the area of research into high school philosophy.