Curriculum - Part of James Anderton's excellent series of sites, and specific to HE. Outlines some of the key concepts, models and underlying issues associated with curriculum, all linked in with learning theories where appropriate. A good starting point to get you thinking, at http://www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/curriculum.htm
Curriculum influences and thinkers. This piece from the excellent Informal Educationweb site is also a good place to start. It is not HE specific, but brings in some of the key curriculum thinkers, and can effectively be used in considering HE. The article is at http://www.infed.org/biblio/b-curric.htm
Curriculum Models :
A nice overview of the differences of product and process, and how to review what you are teaching or planning to teach using this. http://www.infed.org/foundations/w-inf5.htm
A piece about outcome-based curriculum in Australia - the introduction and the bibliography are useful. http://www.leeds.ac.uk/educol/documents/000000860.htm
Considers some aspects of curriculum related to informal learning and the hidden curriculum - useful bibliography. http://www.leeds.ac.uk/educol/documents/00001361.htm
More on the hidden curriculum http://sociology.org.uk/tece1tl.htm#hcurriculum
Curriculum Quick Guide 'Will provide you with instant access to a mini library of useful and relevant information helping you to keep abreast of the changes that affect your role as a teacher and administrator It will also assist you to incorporate good practice to support and enhance your teaching.' This is actually about Key Stage 4, but it is useful. From the LSDA. Download (pdf 164k)
Curriculum Theory and Practice - a nice piece from the excellent informal education web site at
Jeffs T and Mark K (1997) Working With Process. First Published, August 7 1997. www.infed.org/foundations.
Jones, C and Anderson, M (2002) Managing curriculum change
- Change management involves many factors: quality, resources, staff,
students and funding, to name but a few. But above all, it is about
processes - how to get where you want to be. Based on research carried
out in three centres, Managing curriculum change looks at successful
strategies that can be adopted to improve change management in your
institution - LSDA - Download from http://www.lsda.org.uk/pubs/dbaseout/download.asp?code=ISBN1853386421
Key issues in the deployment of teaching staff in FE (2005) Fiona Neathey. This report brings together research conducted on behalf of the LSDA by the Institute for Employment Studies. The study aimed to investigate the most effective and efficient ways for colleges to organise the curriculum, in order to maximise the benefits to learners, while minimising teaching and administration workloads on teachers. download (pdf 448k)
Managing Curriculum Change (LSDA)
Change management involves many factors: quality, resources, staff, students and funding, to name but a few. But above all, it is about processes - how to get where you want to be. Based on research carried out in three centres, Managing curriculum change looks at successful strategies that can be adopted to improve change management in your institution.
Tyler R (1949) Basic Principles of Curriculum and Instruction. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. A good summary of the model (still widely referred to) at http://fcis.oise.utoronto.ca/~daniel_schugurensky/assignment1/1949tyler.html
A Guide for Busy Academics Using Learning Outcomes to Design a Course and Assess Learning
HE teachers are expected to be able to show how:
Aligning the Curriculum to promote good learning
This paper was prepared for the Learning and Teaching Support Network (LTSN) Generic Centre, Imaginative Curriculum Symposium, held in London on November 4th 2002. It promotes the notion of 'constructive alignment' as follows:
Teaching and learning take place in a whole system, embracing classroom, department and institutional levels.
In a poor system, the components (curriculum, teaching and assessment tasks) are not necessarily integrated and tuned to support learning, so that only 'academic' students spontaneously use higher-order learning processes.
In an integrated system, all aspects of teaching and assessment are tuned to support high level learning.
Constructive Alignment (CA) is such a system. It is an approach to curriculum design that optimises the conditions for quality learning download here
Contexts for Curriculum Design : working with external pressures.
Many external pressures are attempting to influence higher education; goal posts are constantly being moved. Curriculum design cannot be a cosy self-contained activity between consenting colleagues. Continuous environmental scanning assumes enormous importance as does some ability to anticipate changes in the future - otherwise curriculum design can become a very frequent and perhaps tedious and reactive process of 'back to the drawing board'. This guide provides advice on how to manage the effects of the external pressures on other aspects of the curriculum (e.g. learning outcomes, teaching & learning strategy, assessment). download here
When you've read some or all of the content above, and any items of your own choice, carry out your own mini curriculum audit by asking these questions:
What are the key internal and external influences on your curriculum?
How do you and your colleagues go about developing the curriculum in:
- Your own subject?
- Your group of subjects?
- Your Department or School?
What factors within the curriculum do you feel you have autonomy with, and some degree of influence and control over?
Bigger Picture Questions
Should the curriculum aim to develop vocational skills, academic knowledge, or rounded human beings as citizens? Are the two things compatible?
Is there a particular curriculum development in your field which is prominent at present? What are its strengths and weaknesses ?