Conceptions of Curriculum: GDPI 810 Module 1

For the first assignment of the GDPI course we were asked to read a variety of articles related to different curriculum conceptions and reflect on them in our own practice.  Here is my Prezi to explain, observe, and reflect upon my learning to date.


Miss Carla


2 thoughts on “Conceptions of Curriculum: GDPI 810 Module 1

  1. Carla,

    A great WordPress Blog and a wonderful Prezi presentation. You have put a tremendous amount of work and “sorting out” into your presentation, and into your presentation itself. I share some comments with regard to content and understanding below.

    Under social approaches (SLIDE 13/78) you have listed Managerial approach (Ornstein & Hunkins, 2009) and Social efficiency ideology (Shiro, 2008). These are more technical conceptions that focus on a very didactical approach to delivering course con tent, not social reconstructionist approaches. It can be confusing because they both center on society. However, the managerial and social efficiency conceptions are more about conforming, shaping individuals to meet a pre-determined society’s needs, like producing widgets in a manufacturing process (much like your comment in Bailey’s Blog that I commented on). In social resonstructionism, the learning environment asks students to be change agents to become citizens to better the world (see the work of the critical curriculum theorist, Paulo Frieire, especially his well know book, Pedagogy of the Oppressed). So, social efficiency models (see the work of Ralph Tyler whose work still has great influence on today’s education systems, internationally) is quite the opposite of social efficiency. I hope this helps clarify the differences. It’s a tough one to grasp when beginning to learn about curricular conceptions! So, on this basis, can you revise slide 20?
    You say in slide 23, school managers can set the stage for change, but the changes suggested here are not necessarily from a social reconstructivist perspective, rather, changes are seen as things a school system wants to implement – hence the management of change. The change can be based on changes to any one of the conceptions of curriculum, but it is not the same as change for social reconstruction. So, it is very similar to the systems approach that Ornstein and Hunkins discuss in that both managerial and systems (and the behavioral) approaches are all seen as under a larger umbrella of technical classification, which classify approaches that “coincide with traditional theories and models of education and reflect established, formal methods of schooling” (2009, p. 3). So, you may want to give this further thought in your slide 20 of your Prezi presentation. In this same light, on slide 29, I would suggest including behavioral and managerial here as well. These changes would take care of “sorting things out” with regards to the two opposite understandings and use of “society”.
    I would encourage you to think about slide 44 and your placement of the behavioral approach. Clue: Do we still use objectives and expectations today in curricular documents? I will be interested to see you revisit slide 48 as the course progresses and to hear back from you on this.
    Interesting interpretation on slide 51 about a focus on the student and teaching learning pedagogies that align with this curricular conception. So, on slides 55-56 you are addressing the dominance of the curricular conception of academic rationalism; good point. Something to think about: In these circumstances, how does information you portray on slide 51 (student-centered conception) juxtapose onto academic rationalism? You correctly point out in slide 58 that technology is an overriding classification, as I have mentioned earlier in this feedback.
    I enjoyed your sharing and expression in slides 64-78. Indeed, what you describe on slide 72 is a shift from conceptions of academic rationalist + technology and cognitive process (Eisner’s terms) to –self-actualization (Eisner) self or humanistic (McNeil) conceptions of the curriculum. I have numerous graduate students who have taught oversees and made the same observation. Very astute. Do you as a teacher making change have support mechanisms?

    Feel free to make a few changes and repost your Prezi if you like.


  2. Hi Ann,
    Thanks for your suggestions. I had already tried to develop and expand on my Prezi after completion, and before you had made comments, so the numbers you have listed were a little difficult to place. Due to the nature of the ‘frames’ of a Prezi document and the way that it is a fluid document makes finding a numbered slide quite challenging. As a result, I wasn’t sure which slides you were referring to by the end of your comment. I tried my best to sort out your meaning, but after fixing one or two of the first slides, all of the other slides’ numbers were abstracted.
    For the second module’s assignments, Kerrin and I have decided to modify and expand upon this current Prezi, making connections to philosophical understandings and curriculum development along the way.


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