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Structure and Agency as Two Problematics in School-based Curriculum Development: A Case Study

Structure and Agency as Two Problematics in School-based Curriculum Development: A Case Study Implicit in the rationale behind the shift from a centre-periphery/systems management approach to a school-based curriculum development (SBCD) approach to curriculum innovation and development are two notions which are viewed here as problematic. The first is that teachers will be ‘free’ to develop curricula which conform to a pedagogic ideal. Based on case-study research, it is argued that this notion must be approached with caution, as it can be shown that, even in a situation where teachers themselves initiate innovation, their actions are constrained by a number of in-school structures. The second notion is that SBCD may be able to overcome problems that occur between the creation and implementation of innovatory programs. However it is argued that individual teachers who are involved in creating an innovative idea also paradoxically interpret this idea in different ways and implement it differently. It is concluded that transformation of innovative ideas is inevitable in any innovatory program, and that this factor may act as a counterbalance to excesses in bureaucratic control sometimes evident in centre-periphery/systems management approaches. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Australian Journal of Education SAGE

Structure and Agency as Two Problematics in School-based Curriculum Development: A Case Study

Australian Journal of Education , Volume 30 (3): 15 – Nov 1, 1986

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© 1986 Australian Council for Educational Research
ISSN
0004-9441
eISSN
2050-5884
DOI
10.1177/000494418603000306
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Implicit in the rationale behind the shift from a centre-periphery/systems management approach to a school-based curriculum development (SBCD) approach to curriculum innovation and development are two notions which are viewed here as problematic. The first is that teachers will be ‘free’ to develop curricula which conform to a pedagogic ideal. Based on case-study research, it is argued that this notion must be approached with caution, as it can be shown that, even in a situation where teachers themselves initiate innovation, their actions are constrained by a number of in-school structures. The second notion is that SBCD may be able to overcome problems that occur between the creation and implementation of innovatory programs. However it is argued that individual teachers who are involved in creating an innovative idea also paradoxically interpret this idea in different ways and implement it differently. It is concluded that transformation of innovative ideas is inevitable in any innovatory program, and that this factor may act as a counterbalance to excesses in bureaucratic control sometimes evident in centre-periphery/systems management approaches.

Journal

Australian Journal of EducationSAGE

Published: Nov 1, 1986

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