Discussion Questions

Words 2,725

What problems, if any, did you have in defining curriculum and why? (2-3 Paragraphs)

The idea of curriculum is hardly new – but the way we understand and theorize it has altered over the years – and there remains considerable dispute as to meaning. It has its origins in the running/chariot tracks of Greece. It was, literally, a course. In Latin curriculum was a racing chariot; currere was to run. A useful starting point for us here might be the definition offered by John Kerr and taken up by Vic Kelly in his standard work on the subject. Kerr defines curriculum as, ‘All the learning which is planned and guided by the school, whether it is carried on in groups or individually, inside or outside the school. (Kelly 1999).

The difficulty in defining curriculum content lies in the conflict between visions.  The curriculum designer already, before starting a curriculum project, brings to his curriculum design project his viewpoints and values.  On the other hand, the client that he is designing the content for has their own set of priorities and issues.  A successful curriculum is a compromise between the private vision of the instructional designer and the needs of the public and the school system.


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