Curriculum Theory: Conflicting Visions and Enduring Concerns

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Sage Publications, 2008 - Education - 237 pages

"Schiro (Boston College) has written a text that examines curriculum theory for experience and pre-service educators with the purpose of understanding educational philosohpies or ideologies that they are likely to encounter in their teaching."
-H.B. Arnold, CHOICE

"The book provides readers with a clear, sympathetic and unbiased understanding of the four conflicting visions of curriculum that will enable them to more productively interact with educators who might hold different beliefs. The book stimulates readers to better understand their own beliefs and also to provide them with an understanding of alternate ways of thinking about the fundamental goals of education"

"A much needed, insightful view of alternative curriculum orientations. This is an exceptionally written book that will be useful to teachers, curriculum workers, and school administrators."
-Marc Mahlios, University of Kansas

"Curriculum Theory: Conflicting Visions and Enduring Concerns is a thought provoking text that invites self-analysis."
-Lars J. Helgeson, University of North Dakota

Curriculum Theory: Conflicting Visions and Enduring Concerns presents a clear, unbiased, and rigorous description of the major curriculum philosophies that have influenced educators and schooling over the last century. Author Michael Stephen Schiro analyzes four educational visions-Scholar Academic, Social Efficiency, Learner Centered, and Social Reconstruction-to enable readers to reflect on their own educational beliefs and allow them to more productively interact with educators who might hold different beliefs.

Key Features

  • Provides a historical perspective on the origins of curriculum ideologies: The book places our current educational debates and issues in a historical context of enduring concerns.
  • Offers a model of how educational movements can be critically analyzed: Using a post-structuralist perspective, this model enables readers to more effectively contribute to the public debate about educational issues.
  • Pays careful attention to the way language is used by educators to give meaning to frequently unspoken assumptions: The text's examination helps readers better understand curricular disagreements that occur in schools.
  • Highlights the complexities of curriculum work in a social context: With an understanding of the ideological pressures exerted on them by society and colleagues, readers can put these pressures in perspective and maintain their own values, beliefs, and practices.

Intended Audience

This book is designed as a supplemental text for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses such as Curriculum Theory, Introduction to Curriculum and Instruction, Curriculum Philosophy, and Curriculum Theory and Practice in the department of education.

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User Review  - bkoopman - LibraryThing

Lenses bias the way we view the world. Understanding them gives us another tool to decipher that world. "Curriculum Theory" provides a framework for understanding four ideologies. It places these ... Read full review


Introduction to the Curriculum Ideologies
Scholar Academic Ideology
Social Efficiency Ideology

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About the author (2008)

Michael Stephen Schiro has taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. He received his bachelorate from Tufts University and his doctorate from Harvard University. In the 1960’s he worked for school desegregation n North Carolina. In the 1970’s he worked to improve urban education in Lowell, Massachusetts. He was chair of the Department of Teacher Education and School Administration at Boston College in the 1980’s. He specializes in mathematics education and curriculum theory, and taught courses in mathematics education, curriculum theory, computer education, literacy, and multicultural education at Boston College from 1974 to 2009, when he retired. He published eleven books with such diverse titles as Integrating Children's Literature and Mathematics in the Classroom, Oral Story Telling and Teaching Mathematics, Mega-Fun Math Games, Curriculum for Better Schools: The Great Ideological Debate, and Tan and the Shape Changer.

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