Background paper developed by
Mr. Philip STABBACK
Dr. Brian MALE
Ms. Dakmara GEORGESCU1
Geneva, November 2011
The paper is meant to inform the curriculum process in Iraq by drawing attention on important aspects of current education and curriculum quality that underpin options considered in the process of developing the new Iraqi Curriculum Framework.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD QUALITY SCHOOL CURRICULUM?
The purpose of this paper is to provide both specialists and non-specialists in the field of curriculum with some ideas to help them assess whether a school system curriculum is of good quality or not. The paper is not intended to be prescriptive in any way. Rather, it is intended to provide a conceptual framework within which to judge the quality of both existing and proposed curricula.
In the simplest terms, curriculum is a description of what, why and how students should learn. The curriculum is therefore not an end in itself. The objective of curriculum is to provide students with the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes to be successful in their lives. The ultimate indicators of curriculum success are the quality of the learning achieved by students and whether and how students use that learning for their personal development and to bring about positive social change. Learning in schools occurs in a range of intended and unintended ways. Intended lea i g ofte efe ed to as the pla ed o fo al u i ulu ost ofte occurs in the classroom and other controlled settings. Its focus is the endorsed curriculum as planned and implemented by teachers. The outcomes of the formal curriculum are normally assessed by teachers and by the relevant authorities.
Uninte ded lea i g the u pla ed o hidde u i ulu a o u a he e
– in the playground, in the corridors and in the classroom – and is largely u o t olled .
Fo the pu poses of this pape , u i ulu is defi ed as the i te ded u i