Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Big Names in Curriculum Theory

John Dewey

Technorationality (behaviorist discourse that focuses on learning outcomes, criticized by MacDonald)

Ralph W. Tyler (the father of curriculum reform)
Tyler (1949): framework for deliberately designing and evaluating curriculum (Tyler rationale)
1. What educational purposes should the school seek to attain?
2. What educational experiences can be provided that are likely to attain these purpose?
3. How can these educational experiences be effectively organized?
4. How can we determine whether these purpose are being attained (evaluation)?

Paulo Freire
A combination of existentialism & neo-Marxism

1947 Chicago Curriculum Conference (hosted by Ralph Tyler) - birthplace of curriculum theory.

Social Efficiency Educators
Ross, Bobbitt, Gilbreth, Taylor, Thorndike

Reconceptualists: in opposition to the Tylerian satus quo. The decade of 1960s marks a critical moment of reconceptualization impacted by the 1957 launching of Sputnik and social unrest (the civil rights movements & the Vietnam War protest). 1969 as begining of the "decade of the Reconceptualization" (Pinar, Reynolds, Slattery, and Taubman)

William Pinar
Creator of the word "Reconceptualists"
Use "post-critical" to describe the existential/phenomenological work

James MacDonald (reconceptualist) (Teacher of Steve Mann, who mentored William Doll and George Willis): from scientism - person-centered humanism - sociopolitical humanism - transcendentalism. Curricularists could construct discourses and structures to allow for an environment more conducive to personal freedom.

Dwayne Huebner (reconceptualist) (Teacher of Michael Apple at Teachers College)
Curriculum as an educative environment. Rejecting technorationality. The purpose of education is "transcendence" - teachers are to help students grow in their capacity for personal evolution and change. Objected to learning theory because it conceived of education as "doing sth. to an individual", which is in opposition to his Heideggerean notion of a person as "being-in-the-world". Power/knowledge connections.

Paul Klohr (reconceptualist)
Teacher of Pinar and Greene at OSU

Maxine Greene (reconceptualist)

Joseph J. Schwab
“The field is moribund. It is unable, by its present methods and principles, to continue and contribute significantly to the advancement of education” (1970).

Janet Miller
Vice-president of AERA Division B (1997-1999)
Managing Editor, JCT (the offical journal of the "Reconceptualists") (1978-1998)
Emphasizes the importance of a diverse curriculum field, advocating controversy, but with mutual respect

Elliot Eisner
Three curricula that all schools teach (1985)
1. Explicit curriculum: The learning and interaction that occurs that is explicitly announced in schools programs
2. Implicit (hidden) curriculum: The learning and interaction that occurs that is not explicitly announced in schools programs
3. Null (non-existing) curriculum: systematically excluded, neglected, or not considered


Larry Cuban
Four categories of curricula (1993)
1. Official: in curriculum guide and conform with state-mandated assessment
2. Taught: individual teachers focus on and choose to emphasize (teacher’s knowledge)
3. Learned: all that students learn
4. Tested: tests represent only part of what is taught or learned

Michael Apple
Neo-Marxism & critical pedagogy
Refuses the notion of reconceptualization


Tanner and Tanner




All understanding is essentially dialogue (Truth is not method but simply what happens in dialogue). What we must never forget is that we are always part of what it is we seek to understand. Truth as experience (without method). Being that can be understood is language. Language is about negotiating and making sense of a human world largely of our own construction.
Hermeneutics is a more general procedure for understanding itself. Gadamer is not usually thought of a "postmodern" but he has this in common with postmodern theorists - questioning the foundations of philosophical modernism. Against Descartes' man as a thinking machine capable of arriving at the kind of certainty to be found in geometry.


Interpretation of the world is impossible without pre-understanding. Language is the house of being.


Postmodern curricularists

Michel Foucault
Triple root of power, knowledge and self.


the overarching view of history is one more metannarrative, even thought it is dominant.

not dissolving differences may be a good thing

Patrick Slattery (student of Pinar)

No comments: