International Bureau of Education
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Content Section

Diagnosis and analysis


Development relevance of curricula

1. What does the country/community want to achieve with regard to the personal development of learners and societal well-being and advancements? And how well the curriculum reflects that education vision?

2. What are the mechanisms for making the curricula to respond to national development policies and strategies? Is there evidence that the mechanisms work effectively?

3. How well are the key/core/cross-cutting competencies identified in the curricula aligned to education policy goals? Is there evidence that such key competencies have been at the core of curriculum development?

4. How are education stakeholders (teachers, learners, private sector, civil society) involved in developing the curriculum vision and appropriate curriculum policies? Is there evidence of their involvement having made a difference?

Curriculum planning, design and content

1. Is there evidence of curriculum development being effectively led and guided in accordance to the set education/curriculum vision and quality standards (i.e. Are there publicly-known and recognized curriculum institutions/agencies and leaders of curriculum processes; Are there guidelines developed for guiding the process of curriculum design, writing, piloting, implementation and revision? Are those guidelines taking into account the results of curriculum evaluation processes? Is the curriculum laid down in a set of public documents, such as curriculum frameworks; syllabuses (subject curricula); textbooks, teacher guides; assessment guides? How are stakeholders involved? (See: Common curriculum framework in Bosnia and Herzegovina)

2. What evidence exist that curricula are grounded on up-to-date concepts of, and approaches to learning and that the learning content is well selected and organised? For example, is there an emphasis on learner-centredness and comprehensive/holistic learning; Are there broad Learning Areas and subjects that cater for meaningful continuity and inter-linkages, balance and curriculum integration; appropriateness to age/ stage of development; core curriculum and differentiated curricula; How are ICTs and e-learning considered for improving the quality of curricula and learning? (See: What makes a quality curriculum?)

3. How well are cross-cutting & emerging issues covered in the curriculum? For example, what are "current" issues to be addressed; How to incorporate issues such as gender equality; HR and citizenship education; ESD; LTLT – peace education, intercultural understanding; HIV and AIDS; Life skills; preparation for life and work; How to keep the curriculum open and flexible in addressing new/emerging issues? (See: Viet Nam textbook review)

4. How do you keep a balance between the need of providing basic skills (i.e. reading, writing, numeracy); the need of imparting relevant knowledge in different subject areas; and the need of addressing cross-cutting and emerging issues, such as LTLT and ESD? (See: Defining the curriculum content and Botswana curriculum framework)

Curriculum implementation, monitoring and evaluation

1. What is the evidence that teachers and students play an effective role in defining and implementing the curriculum (i.e. how well teachers are trained and understand the curriculum; whether teachers can participate in curriculum development processes; whether teachers are prepared to take on new roles, i.e. teachers as facilitators; advisors, moderators; curriculum developers; students as participating in selecting and structuring their learning activities) What is evidence that curriculum implementation is supported by enabling learning environments?

2. What is evidence that schools make efforts to improve their learning environments? (i.e. Communication strategies; Student participation; Enhanced access to learning facilities and resources; Counselling; School ethos and Aesthetic)

3. How well are assessments aligned to the goals of the curriculum? What elements pertaining to assessment have hindered curriculum implementation and hence education quality?

4. Is there evidence of a country-wide system of monitoring and evaluation of curriculum processes? Has it been used for continuous development of the curricula? What is the evidence that evaluation of curricula and associated textbooks have influenced curriculum & textbook revision?

5. What actions are taking place to frame future developments in the realm of learning and curriculum? (i.e. National and/or international curriculum research projects; National curriculum conferences; Forums and Task forces set up to define forward-thinking curriculum policies)

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