A small-scale classroom research approach to curriculum renewal
CITATION: Koen, M. 2011. A Small-Scale Classroom Research Approach to Curriculum Renewal, in E. Bitzer & N. Botha (eds.). Curriculum Inquiry in South African Higher Education: Some Scholarly Affirmations and Challenges. Stellenbosch: SUN MeDIA. 331-348. doi:10.18820/9781920338671/17.
The original publication is available from AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, Stellenbosch: South Africa.
Chapters in Books
INTRODUCTION: Ross argues that the term curriculum can be interpreted as the organisation of desired learning experiences and that it represents a guide to lecturers of what is to be taught in specific institutions (Ross 2000:8). Challenges to organise such learning experiences in order to optimise teaching and learning opportunities are nothing new. Over the past decades universities have experienced increasing pressure from government, stakeholders and employers to design programmes that prepare graduates for today’s competitive working environments. In Chapter 1 of this book, Bitzer confirms this issue by outlining the need for a systematic and scholarly approach to curriculum inquiry as a measure to address academic achievement demands and to keep curricula relevant and effective. Stefani (2009:40) adds that the way a curriculum is designed will influence the way in which students approach their learning. It is therefore not surprising that South African teachers in higher education are constantly reminded to measure the effectiveness of their programmes in order to enhance student learning. A practical challenge is thus how to design a curriculum in the current accountability environment, one that provides students with authentic learning experiences in which they are provided with opportunities to demonstrate skills, knowledge and values required for their future professions.