» Dr. Thomas C. Wilson, Jr.
Adjunct Faculty

College of Educational Studies
Dr. Thomas C. Wilson, Jr.
Office Location:
Reeves Hall 205
University of Southern California, Doctor of Education

For some 50 years, I have been engaged in a myriad of pursuits attempting to understand the complexity among the concepts of equality, freedom, morality, justice, and fairness as related to democratic education theory and practice. These endeavors have been guided by my belief that the aim of education is the development of citizens committed to a participatory, ethical caring and aesthetic democratic life. All activities such as evaluation, curricula, pedagogy, and administration need to be informed by this purpose. I hold a BA in Art Education, Masters in Social Science (political theory and 20th century US history emphasis) and the Doctorate in Education (curriculum emphasis). Throughout my career, I have migrated-not in any distinct linear fashion-between secondary education as teacher, social science department chairman and school administration (16 years) and post secondary education as a faculty member and administrator (32 years). After retiring emeritus from the University of California Irvine (UCI) where I taught part-time, established the office of Instructional Development Services, and served as Principal Analyst in the Office of Academic Affairs concentrating on public school out reach and transformation, I came to Chapman in 1992 to direct the Masters of Art in Education program. Currently, I guide the Paulo Freire Democratic Project. I have lectured and conducted workshops in the US as well as Canada, England, Poland, Russia, and Scotland centered on themes of democratic education, organizational behavior, educational ethics, moral education, critical pedagogy, and social justice as well as making over 100 presentations at various academic conferences and similar venues. Specific research interests focus on the applicability of historical “classic” theories and practice of democratic and ethical functioning at both the individual and system levels to current educational milieus.

Interrelated Scholarly Research Interests:

Exploring the Nature of Democratic Personhood and Associated Discourse.
Conceptualizing and developing Democratic, Community Based Educational Settings.
Examining the form and function of Moral/Ethical Leadership.


Rexach, M. and Wilson, T.  (2012). Obama drama: A play among hope, education, and discontinuity. In S. Bataginnis, B. Kanpol, and A. Wilson Eds.). The hope for audacity. New York: Peter Lang.

Wilson, T., Park, P. and Colón-Muñiz, A. (Eds.). (2010) Memories of Paulo. Sense Publishers: Rotterdam.

Wilson, T. (2009). Liberation pedagogy. In L. Sullivan (Ed.). The Sage glossary of the social and behavioral sciences. Thousand Oaks: CA.

Wilson,T. (2008). Conscientization, Howard Kirschenbaum. Louis Raths,  Values clarification (Four entries). In C.Power, R, Nuzzi, D. Narvaez, D. Lapsley, K. Daniel and T. Hunt. (Eds.). Moral Education (Two Volumes): A handbook. Westport CT: Greenwood.

Wilson, T. (2008). Learning  moments: raging a bit, and with hope. In S. Neito (Ed.). Dear Paulo: Letters from those who dare teach. Boulder, CO: Paradigm.


Wilson, T. (2012, July). La Escuela Freire: Academy  for culture, leadership, and civic engagement. A progress report. Paper presented at the 8th Summer Social Justice Conference, School of Education, Redlands University, Redlands, CA.

Wilson, T. (April, 2011). La Escuela Freire: Academy for culture, leadership, and civic engagement. Paper presented at the meeting of the American Education Research Association, New Orleans, LA.

Wilson, T. and Rexach, M. (April, 2011). Obama and educational language. Paper presented at the meeting of the American Education Research Association, New Orleans, LA.

Wilson, T. (November, 2007). Pedagogy for moral development: Lessons from secondary schools and university contexts. Paper presented at the meeting of the Association for Moral Education, New York University, NY.

Wilson, T. (April, 2007). Louis Rath’s value theory, values clarification, and technical commodification. Paper presented at the meeting of the American Education Research Association, Chicago, Ill.