What are the various models of curriculum?

What are the various types of models of curriculum?

Definition: A simplified representation of reality which is often depicted in diagrammatic form

  1. Models serve as guidelines to action.
  2. Models are found in almost every form of education.
  3. The education profession has models of instruction, of administration, of evaluation, of supervision etc.
  4. In curriculum, there are models of curriculum as opposed to models of curriculum development.

Curriculum models are designed to provide a basis for decisions regarding the selection, structuring and sequencing of the educational experiences

A continuum of curriculum models Rational/objectives models: Ralph Tyler Hilda Taba

Hilda Taba:-

Hilda Taba (7 December 1902 – 6 July 1967) was an architect, a curriculum theorist, a curriculum reformer, and a teacher educator.

Taba was born in a small village in southeastern Estonia.

Taba was introduced to Progressive education ideas at Tartu University by her philosophy professors.

Taba was a student of John Dewey;

She wrote a book entitled Curriculum Development: Theory and Practice (1962).

Some of Taba’s philosophical ideas on curriculum development

Social processes, including the socialization of human beings, are not linear, and they cannot be modeled through linear planning. In other words, learning and development of personality cannot be considered as one-way processes of establishing educational aims and deriving specific objectives from an ideal of education proclaimed or imagined by some authority.

The reconstruction of curricula and programmes is not a short-term effort but a long process, lasting for years.

Social institutions, among them school curricula and programmes, are more likely to be effectively rearranged if, instead of the common way of administrative reorganization—from top to bottom— a well-founded and co-ordinated system of development from bottom to top can be used.

The development of new curricula and programmes is more effective if it is based on the principles of democratic guidance and on the well-founded distribution of work. The emphasis is on the partnership based on competence, and not on administration.

Taba model :-

  • Taba model is inductive approach.
  • Taba model is teacher approach.
  • Taba believe that teachers are aware of the students needs hence they should be the one to develop the curriculum.
  • Taba’s is the Grass-root approach.
  • The main idea to this approach is that the needs of the students are at the forefront to the curriculum.

Taba’s inductive approach:-

Taba advocated an inductive approach to curriculum development.

In the inductive approach, curriculum workers start with the specifics and build up to a general design as opposed to the more traditional deductive approach of starting with the general design and working down to the specifics.

Steps in Taba model:-

  • Diagnosis of learners needs and expectations of the larger society.
  • Formulation of learning objectives.
  • Selection of the learning content.
  • Organization of learning content.
  • Selection of the learning experiences.
  • Organization of learning activities.
  • Determination of what to evaluate and the means of doing it.

Diagnosis of learners needs:-

  • Diagnose of achievement.
  • Diagnosis of students as learner.
  • Diagnosis of curriculum problems.

Systematic diagnosis process:-

  • Problem identification
  • Problem analysis
  • Formulating hypothesis and gathering data.
  • Experimenting with action.

Formulation of learning objectives-

Main objectives of education are: –

  • To add to knowledge they posses
  • To enable them to perform skills which otherwise they would not perform
  • To develop certain understanding, insights and appreciations.
  • Development of healthy personality.
  • Analysis of particular culture and society which educational program serves.

Function of educational objectives:-

Transmit culture

Reconstruct society

Fullest development of individual To guide on curriculum decision on

What to cover?

What to emphasize?

What content to select?

Which learning experiences to stress?

Principle of formulation of objectives:-

  • Objective should useful, cleared and concreteness
  • Objective should describe both kind of behavior i.e. expected and content
  • Objective should be realistic
  • Scope of objective should be broad.

Selection and organization of content:-

  • Content should be rational base
  • Validity and significance of content
  • Consistency with social realities
  • Appropriateness to the need and interest of students
  • Making proper distinctions between the various levels of content

Organization and Selection of the learning experiences:-

This involves more than applying principles of learning.

Have you used a variety of teaching methods?

When using lecture will you make that active with questions and discussion?

Are there opportunities for students to learn from one another?

Are there opportunities for students to apply what they are learning through solving real problems or developing projects that could be used in a real work setting?

Determination of what to evaluate and the means of doing it

Plans need to be made for evaluation.

How should the quality of learning be evaluated to assure that the ends of education are being achieved?

How does one make sure that there is consistency between the aims and objectives and what is actually achieved by students?

Does the curriculum organization provide experiences which offer optimum opportunities for all varieties of learners to attain independent goals?

Taba believed that:

“To evolve a theory of curriculum development and a method of thinking about it, one needs to ask what demands and requirements of culture and society both are, both for the present and the future. Curriculum is a way of preparing young people to participate in our culture.”

Application of the Taba model:-

  • Taba model is currently used in most curriculum designs.
  • Identifying the needs of the students.
  • Developing objectives
  • Selecting instructional method
  • Organizing learning experiences
  • Evaluating

Strengths of Taba model:-

  • Gives teachers a greater role by not just making them implementers of the curriculum but also developers
  • Uses the inductive method
  • Teacher approach is used
  • Notes that teachers are aware of the students’ needs therefore they are the ones that should develop the curriculum
  • Sees curriculum as a “plan for learning”
  • Gives importance to objectives in order to establish a sense of purpose for deciding what to include, exclude and emphasize in a curriculum.

Curriculum Development: The Tyler Model

The Tyler Model, developed by Ralph Tyler in the 1940’s, is the quintessential prototype of curriculum development in the scientific approach. One could almost dare to say that every certified teacher in America and maybe beyond has developed curriculum either directly or indirectly using this model or one of the many variations.

Tyler did not intend for his contribution to curriculum to be a lockstep model for development. Originally, he wrote down his ideas in a book Basic Principles of Curriculum and Instruction for his students to give them an idea about principles for to making curriculum. The brilliance of Tyler’s model is that it was one of the first models and it was and still is a highly simple model consisting of four steps.

  1. Determine the school’s purposes (aka objectives)
  2. Identify educational experiences related to purpose
  3. Organize the experiences
  4. Evaluate the purposes

Step one is determining the objectives of the school or class. In other words, what do the students need to do in order to be successful? Each subject has natural objectives that are indicators of mastery. All objectives need to be consistent with the philosophy of the school and this is often neglected in curriculum development. For example, a school that is developing an English curriculum my create an objective that students will write essays. This would be one of many objectives within the curriculum.

Step two is developing learning experiences that help the students to achieve step one. For example, if students need to meet the objective of writing an essay. The learning experience might be a demonstration by the teacher of writing an essay. The students then might practice writing essays. The experience (essay demonstration and writing) is consistent with the objective (Student will write an essay).

Step three is organizing the experiences. Should the teacher demonstrate first or should the students learn by writing immediately? Either way could work and preference is determined by the philosophy of the teacher and the needs of the students. The point is that the teacher needs to determine a logical order of experiences for the students.

Lastly, step four is evaluation of the objectives. Now the teacher assesses the students ability to write an essay. There are many ways to do this. For example, the teacher could have the students write an essay without assistance. If they can do this, it is evidence that the students have achieve the objective of the lesson.

There are variations on this model. However, the Tyler model is still considered by many to be the strongest model for curriculum development.

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