The Tyler Rational is widely used across schools in Canada because it provides an easy and seemingly “clear cut” method of teaching children. This is because it focuses on specific questions that we ask ourselves when we build on a curriculum or plan activities for the students to complete.
This rational falls under the Product Model of Curriculum and places a lot of focus preparing students for future jobs and careers. Ralph Tyler believed that “the real purpose of education is not to have the instructor perform certain activities, but to bring about significant changes in the students’ pattern of behaviour,” and in this way, students could be moulded into perfect working adults. Students who do well in specific classes are encouraged to take classes that will help them get into colleges or universities after graduating and others were guided into more immediate practical classes like shop or wielding to be useful to the workforce with more expediency. This can sometimes lead to programs (like art) being pushed to the side or even cut completely if they are not seen as being valuable to the work force
These key questions can be very helpful as a starting point for any learning activity, but it does tend to provide a very “stiff” outline with little to no room for student and teacher voices. It does nothing to acknowledge the outside world or the experiences of the youth and expertise of the teachers. This rational looks at students as an entity of raw energy or resource to be moulded into a defined shape. I believe this is the largest limitation. This model is made up of “cookie cutter” and “one size fits all” programmes that do not leave much room for inclusive education, different learning styles, socioeconomic backgrounds, the community, or the funding of the schools into account and end up being less effective for everybody involved.