According to Pinar (2013), curriculum theory and other research fields have contributed to the transformation and reshaping of education curricula. The philosophy reflects on the academic experience of a particular student and how the student will use what he has learned in the classroom to support his future. Curriculum philosophy is influenced by sociological, educational, psychological, and philosophical sciences. According to theorist James MacDonald, the selection of fundamental units for building philosophical structures is a core problem that drives any theory (Pinar, 2013).
The fundamental unit of curriculum theory is founded on values.
The curriculum analyzes the position of education now to determine the future. The curriculum theory is more of integration of all other available theories of learning and collection of qualities that are likely to benefit a student the most. The student must thus be allowed to fully participate in the decision making process of all matters pertaining the learning process given that it impacts directly on his life (Pinar, 2013). The curriculum theory is an emergent teaching and educational processes that puts the learner at the centre of education as the key beneficiary to the system.
Curriculum theory enables a student to understand the course content and its symbolic representations.
The theory was first heard in 1828 following the Yale Report that promoted Greek and Latin Memorization (Pinar, 2013). This paper will be focused on how the learners can be involved in curriculum development, how the students can participate in assessments, the instruction strategies adopted to include learners in participating in the curriculum. The cross-curriculum integration and application of curriculum theory in practice will also be explored.
Involvement of Learners in Curriculum Development
Curriculum of schools are planned and organized most by academic staffs. Some of the curriculums are developed by staff members who lack actual experience of what it takes to be a student of a given field. An effective curriculum of any faculty of study acknowledges the abilities, needs and priorities of students undertaking the course. The best strategy of achieving the needs, priorities and abilities of the today_x0092_s students is by including them in every level of the new curriculum development (Young, 2013).
Curriculum theory allows students to be involved in the planning stages of curriculum development as well as some of them playing the student advocacy roles in the planning stages.
The student representative appointed to take part in the curriculum development brings the majority students_x0092_ perspective regarding the curriculum. Students to some extent have had experience during their entire education life and it is thus from the challenges and limitations that the opinions can be drawn. Information on student resources and effectiveness of student facilities can only be understood by student themselves. The balancing of the course contents and how students feel about the relevance of certain aspects of the curriculum should be emphasized on as described by the curriculum theory. The assessment strategies and contributions of today_x0092_s students must have insights that are likely to have a positive good for the future generation (Young, 2013). The curriculum theory affirms that student-friendly curriculum can only be achieved when all the opinions of the students are validated and put into consideration during curriculum development and thereby increasing the chances of success of that curriculum. Curriculum theory suggests that students should take part in end-of course-evaluation in terms giving their personal observation of how the curriculum was tackled and the downfall that it had. Students are then allowed to make suggestion of additional methodologies that are highly likely to yield better results if explored (Young, 2013). The theory is dynamic and undergoes transformations from time to time in ensuring that the best is produced out of the students.
Involvement of Learners in Assessment
Curriculum theory recognizes that the education system is constantly changing to even more complexity and strictness. Guiding principles and expected accountability is under transformation. The best strategy inferred by curriculum theory is to develop life-long standards that assist students to acquire clear and accessible targets in their studies (Tyler, 2013).
The curriculum advocates for the ability of a student to prove and make sense of what he has learnt during the education period and hence assessment.
The students have to balance the assessments and achieve growth through effective accountability. The theory confirms that involvement of students in assessments allow them not only to develop confidence in what they can achieve, but also enable them to focus on their targets. The students involved in every assessment are able to make judgements about their own performance in units and make the necessary adjustments to score better grades (Tyler, 2013). Students develop the responsibility for their own learning and teachers can thus move from being graders to facilitators of course contents. Students are able to make their own goals out of the assessments whose main goal is to promote growth rather that providing grades according to the curriculum theory. When assessments are taken correctly and accurately, learners get to realize their potentials. Curriculum theory illustrates that it is from the potentials that the teachers can identify the weak points of each student and make the necessary adjustments that can potentiate the academic growth and development of the student. The theory supports that formative assessment are effective in ensuring that students are fully involved in the assessment process (Tyler, 2013). The case is observed where students are mandated to ask for what would make them do better in given assessments.
Instruction Strategies of including all Learners
Curriculum theory acknowledges that good behaviour is a key component that has to be considered in engaging the learners in an assessment and learning process in general. Emotional and cognitive competences facilitate the entire process of students_x0092_ engagement. The theory recommends that behavioural, positive cognition and feeling of students have to be considered during involvement of all students in learning and assessments (Tyler, 2013). The first instruction to involving all the students is making the engagement meaningful. As such, each student should consider the engagement process worthy of spending their time. The involvement should emphasize on sense and competence. Students hence get to evaluate their individual abilities. All of them should develop an "I can do this" mind during the entire process of assessment. Students should be able to prove that they understand the entire process of the curriculum theories so that when they are all engaged in the curriculum process, and they show understanding (Tyler, 2013). Feedback after they have been involved in the assement process makes the students to have individual progress. The Involvement process should provide autonomic support. Curriculum theory defines autonomy as accepting the opinions of students and still maintaining control over the whole assessment process. The students should also be provided with adequate time for absorption of the course contents before they are actively engaged in the process of assessment (Tyler, 2013). Curriculum theory advocates for collaborative learning as the instruction that will enhance the chances of success of the students_x0092_ engagement process. Establishment of a positive-students relationship is an instruction that has for a long period facilitated the success of assessments. The relationship enables teachers to facilitate a mastery orientation within the students.
Curriculum theory is made out of borrowing from other disciplines. It therefore accepts the fact that integration of other curriculum promotes learning by attending to the holistic aspects of education. Research has shown that every curriculum is complemented more when combined with another curriculum (Young, 2013).
Cross-curricular integration concept begun early in 1902 and since then it has proven to have a lot of benefits to students.
The combination makes the education process more flexible to facilitate learning process at all conditions using variety of teaching methods. The cross-Curricular integration promotes critical and creative thinking amongst the learners who are able to save more time on learning the most significant aspects of the course. The process improves unit's integrity by providing numerous options of developing students' assessments (Young, 2013). The students can thus be involved by numerous appropriate ways in assessments and thereby improving their academic achievements.
Application of Curriculum Theory
The curriculum theory is widely used in schools as a collection of study plans both at elementary and high school levels. The curriculum has been linked with creation of good opportunities to learners. Research has shown that the curriculum theory has always attempted to answer what the students are required to know by the time they are leaving schools. The theory is thus applicable to any educational institution (Tyler, 2013). The curriculum theory has widely been applied in the political arena in developing leadership qualities and managerial institutions that apply holistic approaches to problem solving and decision making. The impact of curriculum theory is far much felt at the society and government levels.
Curriculum theory was developed in the early in the 1800. Curriculum theory is an academic discipline that is founded out of linkages from other disciplines. The theory is supported by many scholars as the best theory that puts a learner at the centre of education as the key stakeholder. The course objective is demonstrated that curriculum theory is one of the best academic disciplines. Curriculum theory advocates for the engagement of students in the curriculum development so that their efforts can be manifested when they say what can be of use to them and that which might not in the course content. The aim of the study was to provide instructions that can guide the process of engaging the students in the assessment process. The theory has been observed to have the most positive learning outcomes that are widely applicable both at the society level and in politics. The learning resources adopted in the learning process must be made available to the students so that they can denote the contents and participate in the lesson planning processes. Curriculum theory has adopted the best pedagogic approaches given that it borrows its information from various academic disciplines. Curriculum theory follows all the ethical considerations in learning process, the most important including consumer-centred services. The learner is the core when it comes to definition of learning and thus, the curriculum is applicable to any education system regardless of ethnic background of its learners.
Pinar, W. F. (2013). International handbook of curriculum research. New York, NY: Routledge. Tyler, R. W. (2013). Basic principles of curriculum and instruction. University of Chicago Press. Young, M. (2013). Overcoming the crisis in curriculum theory: A knowledge-based approach. Journal of curriculum Studies, 45(2), 101-118.