CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT: What is the meaning of curriculum in the context of education development?



1 a i). Examine the meaning of curriculum in the context of education development

Curriculum is a plan of Education. This plan transforms ideas into curriculum which is related to life, needs, aspirations and problems of people. In this manner, the curriculum becomes a powerful and dynamic instrument of social, economic and cultural transformation of the society.

Definition and Meaning of Curriculum

By curriculum, Bishop (1985) is the sum total of all the experiences a pupil undergoes. There are many meanings attached to the word “curriculum” sometimes it is referred to as “syllabus or list of subjects or course of study or topics or terms of knowledge to be covered or content or organization of teaching and learning or method or time table etc. Curriculum is much wider than syllabus, where a syllabus is only part of the total curriculum. So, curriculum is concerned not so much with prescribing the knowledge to be acquired as with the area of learning experiences to be organized by teachers, both within and outside the school to enable pupils to adopt a positive attitude to learning, but also to acquire and apply knowledge and skills to develop pupils’ tastes and a balanced sense of values.

Education on the other hand is life process to provide the pupil with knowledge, desirable attitudes and skills. Hilda Taba (1962) sees education as a process of preservation and transmission of cultural heritage. Education is life-long and is a continuos process.

Course Objectives

The course aims at equiping the Bachelor of Education Degree students with basic knowledge, describe attitudes and practical professional skills. Specifically, students should be able to do the following:

  • Explain common concepts, principles and terms as applied in the course of curriculum development.
  • Assess the role of various agencies, institutions, and personnel involved in curriculum development process.
  • Apply the theoretical knowledge attitudes and skills acquired to plan, develop, implement and evaluate school curriculum in individual subject areas.
  • Evaluate educational practices, experiences in the process of curriculum evaluation.

    Course Content

The content of this course is based on the stated objectives with specific emphasis on application of curriculum.

  • The school curriculum: This will address areas such as: definitions of education, school curriculum and elements of curriculum. Dimensions of Education. Curriculum Documents and Curriculum Questions.
  • Foundations of Curriculum: These are sources of curriculum. They include: Philosophical, Historical, Psychological, Sociological and Professional Foundations. The main concern in these foundations of curriculum will be to study what they are and how they influence curriculum practices.
  • Aims, Goals and Objectives of Education. This topic will require the student to know definitions of Aims, Goals and Objectives of Curriculum Selections and Classification of School Objectives. Interpretation of National Goals into the Teaching and Learning of Stated Objectives at School Level.
  • Curriculum Development Process: The student will be required to learn how a curriculum blue-print is developed from Situational Analysis to Maintenance of curriculum.
  • Curriculum Design. The topic will address: Definition of Curriculum Design. Theories of Curriculum Design, Patterns of Curriculum Design, Principles of Selection and Organization of Design.
  • Curriculum Implementation. The student will be required to learn: Importance of Curriculum Implementation. Agents of Curriculum Implementation. The Process of Curriculum Implementation and Teacher Education Cycle in Kenya.
  • Curriculum Evaluation: The topic will be concerned with: Definitions, types of Evaluation and their Role in Curriculum. Role of Formative and Summative Evaluation. Agents of Curriculum Evaluation.





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