WHAT IS CURRICULUM?
The four commonplaces of education are that
someone teaches something to someone
somewhere. Some people define the “something,”
the curriculum, as what is found in the textbook
or teacher’s guide. Others broaden the definition
of curriculum to mean everything that happens
with the support of the school.
The curriculum defines all of the educative
experiences learners have in an educational
program, the purpose of which is to achieve
broad goals and related specific objectives that
have been developed within a framework of
theory and research, past and present
professional practice, and the changing needs
of society.(Parkay et al 2006)Curriculum,
simply put, is a way of talking about what we
want students to learn. Curriculum is the
organization of teaching and learning.
HERE ARE SEVERAL OTHER DEFINITIONS:
A curriculum can be defined as a plan of
action or a written document that
includes strategies for achieving desired
goals or ends. This position, popularized
by Ralph Tyler and Hilda Taba,
exemplifies a linear view of curriculum.
Curriculum can be defined broadly as
dealing with the experiences of the
learner. This view considers almost
anything in school as part of a
curriculum. It is rooted in Dewey’s
definition of experience and education.
Curriculum can also be viewed as a field
of study, comprising its own foundations
and domains of knowledge as well as its
own research, theory, and principles and
its own specialists to interpret this
Curriculum can also be considered in
terms of subject matter (such as,
mathematics, science, English, history,
etc.) or content which means the way we
organize and assimilate information.
Curriculum is a planned, composite effort of a
school to guide students toward predetermined
learning outcomes. Marsh and Willis (2007)
place the various definitions of curriculum
along a spectrum: At one end, curriculum is
seen merely as a course of study; at the other
end, curriculum is more broadly defined as
everything that occurs under the auspices of the
The word “curriculum” is derived from the Latin
word currere, meaning “the course or circuit that
a race is to follow. It implies the path or track to
be followed or the course of study to be
undertaken” Some people understand curriculum
as everything that runs or occurs under the
auspices of the school. In the middle of the
spectrum, curriculum is viewed as an interaction
between students and teachers that is designed
to achieve specific educational goals (Marsh and
Curriculum, then, is much more than what we
see in curriculum guides, textbooks, and
teachers’ guides. To show the
interconnectedness of written materials with
teaching, learning, and learning outcomes, this
paper will discuss three areas of curriculum
emphasis: the intended curriculum, the taught
curriculum, and the learned curriculum. In
addition, we will consider the hidden
curriculum and the null curriculum.
ELEMENTS / COMPONENTS OF THE
For most curricula, the major components or
(1) aims, goals and objectives;
(2) subject matter/content;
(3) learning experiences and
(4) evaluation approaches.
When translated into questions, each component
can be addressed by the following:
1. What is to be done?
2. What subject matter is to be included?
3. What institutional strategies, resources and
activities will be employed?
4. What methods and instruments will be used to
assess the results of the curriculum? (Bilbao, et
AREAS OF CURRICULUM EMPHASIS
Curriculum is a process, not just textbooks and
other learning materials. It includes intended,
taught and learned curriculum. The intended
curriculum refers to the formal, approved
guidelines for teaching content to pupils that is
developed for teachers and/or by teachers.
A nation’s goals often shape or direct the broad
set of guidelines for the overall curriculum. The
Department of Education intends that teachers
will teach and students will learn what the
guidelines set for the training.
PRINCIPLES FOR CURRICULUM DESIGN
Curriculum is a process, not just textbooks and other learning
materials. It includes intended, taught and learned curriculum.
National goals for education need to be linked with national
assessment, pupils learning outcomes, school curriculum, and
teacher training curricula.
Curriculum needs to extend beyond an emphasis on acquiring
fact-based knowledge to include skills, attitudes, and values.
Curriculum must specify adequate instruction time for basic
subjects, especially language development and mathematics in
Professionals with current teaching experience need to be
involved at all levels of writing, developing, and evaluating
Curriculum should be widely validated by parents, community
members, teachers, ministries across sectors and the business
community. This will build understanding, support and
confidence in schools and teachers.
Textbooks need to follow the clear, well-organized scope
and sequence of the curriculum and to be available when
a new official curriculum is published.
Textbooks and materials need to be piloted before they
are distributed widely.
National investments need to make provision for updates
and changes to textbooks and learning materials.
The curriculum review and development cycle must
proceed expeditiously to ensure that the curriculum is
relevant and current. For example, a ten-year cycle is too
Effective curriculum evaluation examines and makes
judgments on the value of intended, taught, and learned
curriculum according to pre-set standards. Summative
evaluation should precede curriculum revision.
Curriculum needs to be responsive to emerging issues as they arise,
for example, Life Skills approaches, whether they relate to
HIV/AIDS prevention, Environment Education, Peace Education,
or Education for Development. It will often be necessary to
incorporate new agendas into curriculum.
Pupil achievement is enhanced if pupils first become literate in
their mother tongue, but investments in first language texts of
increasing complexity may be prohibitively expensive. However,
whatever the languages policy may be, teaching must be effective
for pupils to achieve.
Curriculum also consists of how the teacher teaches and makes
links with what children already know. Direct improvement of
teaching and learning at the classroom level can contribute to
better learning outcomes, even in the face of a less than optimal
Teacher education and professional development need to include a
curriculum development focus that helps teachers understand both
curricula content and the processes involved in supporting learning
(e.g., how to teach reading and writing and how to assess student
Learning outcomes should describe what children should
know and can do, and they should be observable in the
course of classroom life through a variety of mechanisms.
Learning outcomes, not written tests, should drive the
Establishing clear learning outcomes provides the context
for practical assessment.
Assessing student ability to perform specific learning
outcomes needs to be viewed as a tool which helps
teachers to know whether learning is occurring or not.
Assessment is more than testing children’s
understanding. It also involves assessing the entire
educational system's ability to provide learning
opportunities for children.
System-wide support is necessary for true curriculum
change, especially for change at the most important level,
RALPH TYLER MODEL: FOUR BASIC
This is popularly known as Tyler’s rationale. He
posited four fundamental questions or principles
in examining any curriculum in school. These are
What educational purposes should the school
seek to attain?
What educational experiences can be provided
that are likely to attain these purposes?
How can these educational experiences be
How can we determine whether these purposes
are being attained or not?
TYPES OF CURRICULUM OPERATING IN
Allan Glatthorn (2000) describes seven types of curriculum operating
in the schools, such as:
Recommended curriculum- proposed by scholars and professional
Written curriculum- appears in school, district, division, or country
Taught curriculum- what teachers implement or deliver in the
classroom and schools
Supported curriculum- resource-textbooks, computers, and AV
materials which supports in the implementation of the curriculum
Asserted curriculum- that which is tested and evaluated
Learned curriculum- what the students actually learn and what is
Hidden curriculum- the unintended curriculum
THREE BASIC CURRICULUM DESIGNS
Subject-centered design - includes
subject design, discipline design, broad
field design, correlation design and
Learner-centered design – those
identified as child-centered design,
experience design, romantic/radical
design, and humanistic design
Problem-centered design, considers life
situations, core design, and social
NEW TEACHER EDUCATION CURRICULUM
BACHELOR IN SECONDARY EDUCATION (BSED)
General Education Courses – 63 units required
English Language 9 units
Social Sciences 15 units
Engl 113 - Comm Arts 1
- Rizal’s Life and Works
Engl 123 - Comm Arts 2
- Agrarian Reform, Taxation, and
Engl 213 - Oral Comm
English Literature 3 units
Psychology - General Psychology
Eng 223 - Intro to Lit. & Phil. Lit.
Filipino Language 9 units
Pol. Sci 233 - Phil. Gov’t & Constitution
Fil 113 - Komunikasyon sa Akademikong Filipino
Information & Com. Tech. (ICT) – 3 units
Fil 123 - Pagbasa at Pagsulat Tungo sa Pananaliksik
Physical Education – 8 units
Fil 213 - Masining na Pagpapahayag
Natural Science 6 units
- Phil. Hist., Roots & Devt.
- Self- Testing
- Fund. of Rhythmic
Sci 113 - Biological Science
- Group Games
Sci 123 - Earth Science
- Social Recreation
Mathematics 6 units
NSTP – 3 units
Math 113 - Basic Math
Math 123 - College Algebra
- Fund. of Drawing 1 unit
Humanities 6 units
Educ 413c -Guidance & Counseling 3 units
Hum123 - Art Appreciation
Fundamentals of Music 3 units
Total = 69 units (75)
Professional Education Courses
Child and Adolescent Development
Social Dimensions of Education
The Teaching Professions
- 51 units
Methods and Strategies Courses
- 1 unit
Principles of Teaching 1
- 6 units
Principles of Teaching 2
Assessment of Student Learning 1 Assessment of Student Learning 2 Educational Technology 1
Educational Technology 2
Developmental Reading 1
Field Study Courses - 12 units
Field Study 1
- 1 unit
Field Study 2
- 1 unit
Field Study 3
- 1 unit
Field Study 4
- 1 unit
Field Study 5
- 1 unit
- 24 units
Field Study 6
- 3 units
- 3 units
Specialization/Content Courses- 60 units
60 units of contest courses in one of the following areas of
specialization for BSED:
Physical Sciences (Chemistry, Physics, General Science)
Biological Sciences (Biology and Environmental Science)
Music, Arts, and Physical Education
Technology & Livelihood Educ.
Beyer, L. E., & Apple, M. W.,(1998) The curriculum: problems, politics,
and possibilities. 2d ed. Albany, NY: State University of New York
Brady, L., & Kennedy, K. (2003) Curriculum construction. Sydney: Pearson,
Marsh, Colin J. & Willis, George . (2007)Curriculum, alternative
ongoing issues. Columbus, Ohio: Pearson, Merill Prentice
Doll, W.E., Jr., & Gough, N. (Eds). (2002) Curriculum visions. New York:
Henderson, J. G., & Kesson K.R. (2004). Curriculum wisdom. Upper Saddle
River, NJ:n Pearson.
Hlebowitz, P. S. (2005). Designing the school curriculum. New York: Allyn