Approaches to curriculum development : case studies of innovation in the social studies curriculum in the UK and Taiwan.
There are ten chapters in this thesis. Chapter One introduces the context of the research,
with particular reference to national spirit education and the social studies curriculum in
Taiwan and raises the general research questions on the basis of a preliminary study of the
field. Chapter Two deals with methodological issues in a contemporary historical inquiry
into cases of curriculum development in social studies in the UK and Taiwan. This involves
a discussion of contemporary history, of case study of curriculum development, of cross-site
analysis, of curriculum scholarship, and of the process of cross-cultural understanding.
Chapters Three to Eight present six cases of social studies curriculum development in
Taiwan and UK: the Chou-shan Model, Pan-chiao Model, and Nan-hai Model in Taiwan;
the Humanities Curriculum Project, the dissemination of Man:A Course of Study in the UK,
and the subject of History in the National Curriculum in England. They describe the
background of the individual projects and their approaches to curriculum planning, change,
processes of curriculum development, dissemination and evaluation.
Chapter Nine is a cross-site analysis based on the six cases. This focuses on issues to do with
the notion of cultural selection, curriculum control, social values, curriculum material,
pedagogical method, the role of teachers in the process of curriculum development, the
professional culture of teachers, teachers as subverters, the involvement of teacher training
in dissemination, and the contribution of evaluation.
Chapter Ten sets out a number of conclusions, in which it is recognised that curriculum
projects in social studies, as cultural developments located in particular historical, social
cultural settings, need to be understood in their contexts. Nevertheless, the cross-site
analysis of these six cases appears to support certain retrospectively derived principles for
curriculum development which appear to cross the cultural borders of the UK and Taiwan.