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Title: The power of the provisional : the Curriculum Development Unit : a case study in innovation in modern Irish education
Author: Trant, Maurice Anthony
Awarding Body: Institute of Education (University of London)
Current Institution: UCL Institute of Education (IOE)
Date of Award: 1993
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The general theme is the experience of the Curriculum Development Unit as a case study in innovation in modern Irish education. The main time span is 1972-1987. The approach is broadly historical. The story of the Curriculum Development Unit is told in the context of what was happening in the Irish educational system during the period in question and, more broadly, in the context of the political and social development of contemporary Ireland. Against this background the Unit's experience is assessed - as an illustration of the influence of certain national events and also for the light that the development of the Unit itself can throw on these events. Two main research questions are addressed in the dissertation: What is the story underlying the Unit's efforts to institutionalise itself? How may this story be told by one of the principal actors involved? The focus of the research is on the efforts to institutionalise the innovative activities of the Unit. The main thesis is that this effort has largely failed mainly because of the strong centralising tendencies in the Irish system and the improbable nature of the Unit's sponsorship - a partnership between the local education authority, a university and a Government ministry. This is not to belittle the Unit's achievements; these perhaps have been all the more significant given the failure to institutionalise the Unit. The Unit may yet prove to be an interesting example of a phenomenon that is in keeping with the late twentieth century - an ad hoc body with no guarantee of survival, which manages to exist and even prosper in situations where more stable organisations are falling by the wayside.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Curriculum ; Pedagogy and Assessment