Curriculum development for inclusive practice

Topics: Curriculum, Education, Curriculum studies Pages: 8 (2869 words) Published: April 2, 2014
In the authors essay we will be looking at the theories of others and personal opinions in relation to Curriculum development and how effectively it is followed to ensure inclusivity of all. We will also be identifying and defining issues associated with implementing an inclusive curriculum and what developments have been made in order to include each student into a specific programme. Inclusive curriculum practice refers to the process of developing, designing and refining programmes of study to minimise the barriers that students may face in accessing the curriculum. By focusing on the core requirements of a course it is possible to identify aspects of the curriculum that might prevent some students from achieving these core requirements. The task is then to redesign the course to reduce or remove these potential barriers. This should not only focus upon current students, but in anticipation of students who may participate in the future and also meeting the requirements of students who do not wish to disclose an impairment, and still assist them in participating to their full potential. In ones view, Inclusivity should not be believed as a natural outcome from students when entering a learning environment as barriers may be present that may alter the curriculum as it moves with the students.

Curriculum was described by John Kerr and quoted by Kelly (2002 p.12) 'all the learning which is planned and guided by the school, whether it is carried on in groups or individually, inside or outside the school’. The idea of curriculum is not exactly a new one; the word itself has its roots in ancient Greek and Latin. But the way it is understood and the way that it has been theorised has altered over the years. Lecturers and professors have all contributed to defining and explaining the curriculum in a series of models that can be used to stipulate in advance what exactly we are looking to achieve and how we are to achieve it, in other words learning is planned and guided. Four main approaches or models to curriculum theory and practice are syllabus, product, process, and praxis. Curriculum as a syllabus, that is to be transmitted, is concerned only with content; it is designed for the student to gain various information and to enable them to pass an examination, for example a Diploma in Bricklaying. Syllabus with its own history is devised from Greek and Latin origins, meaning to put a plan in to action. I believe it as a body of knowledge to be transmitted or delivered to the students in the best and most effective way. Curriculum as a product is concerned with specific outcomes. Objectives are set, lesson plans are devised and applied, and the outcomes or ‘products’ are measured by the success rate of session outcomes and student contribution to achieving the outcome. Curriculum as a Process can be described as not a physical outcome but rather the interaction of the author and students, and how effectively knowledge and learning is actually taking place. With each student growing more self aware and confident of applying themselves to the session whether it may be individual or group activities. Lawrence Stenhouse (1975) produced one of the best-known explorations of a process model of curriculum theory and practice. He defined curriculum tentatively: "A curriculum is an attempt to communicate the essential principles and features of an educational proposal in such a form that it is open to critical scrutiny and capable of effective translation into practice." http://cnx.org/content/m13293/latest/

Curriculum as a praxis can also be defined as practice which is explained as not focusing exclusively on individuals alone or even the group, but a more careful attention to the way in which individuals or a group create understandings and demonstrate their opinions. Such as in sessions that highlight possible experiences or different cultural and racial groups in society, this can play its part in helping students of...
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