Knowledge and the Curriculum

  • David Scott
Part of the Evaluating Education: Normative Systems and Institutional Practices book series (ENSIP)


This chapter focuses on knowledge and how it relates to the school curriculum, with the argument being made that a curriculum, and a set of curriculum standards, is necessarily framed by a theory of knowledge. Indeed, it would be difficult to think about learning and the curriculum without also at the same time making reference to what is to be learned, in other words, the learning object or objects. And therefore our aim as curriculum-developers and educators becomes the development of some form of knowledge, and in turn this points to the many different types of knowledge that can come from learning. A curriculum, which is a set of teaching and learning prescriptions, is a knowledge-forming activity. However, this cannot settle the issue of what should be included in that curriculum and what should be excluded from it. And in addition, there is still a need to determine what might constitute legitimate and illegitimate forms of knowledge.


Social Constructivism Knowledge Construct Social Epistemology Demonstrative Conception Transcendental Condition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Bhaskar, R. (2010). Reclaiming reality (New Edition). London/New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  2. Brandom, R. (2000). Articulating reasons: An introduction to inferentialism. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  3. California State Board of Education. (2006). California career technical education model curriculum standards: Grades seven through twelve. Sacramento: California State Board of Education.Google Scholar
  4. Cromby, J., & Nightingale, D. (1999). What’s wrong with social constructionism? In D. Nightingale & J. Cromby (Eds.), Social constructionist psychology: A critical analysis of theory and practice. Buckingham: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Derry, J. (2013). Can inferentialism contribute to social epistemology. Journal of Philosophy of Education, 47(2), 222–235.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Dweck, C. (2007). Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York: Ballantine Books.Google Scholar
  7. Hacking, I. (2000). The social construction of what? Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  8. National Curriculum in England History Programme. (2013). London: HTML.Google Scholar
  9. Oakeshott, M. (1962) Rationalism in Politics. London: Methuen.Google Scholar
  10. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). (2009b). Knowledge and skills for life: PISA. Paris: OECD Publications.Google Scholar
  11. Peirce, C. S. (1982) The essential peirce, two volumes, edited by Nathan Houser, Christian Kloesel, and the Peirce Edition Project, Bloomington, Indiana, Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Putnam, H. (2004). The collapse of the fact/value dichotomy and other essays. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Reiss, M., & White, J. (2012). An Aims-based Curriculum: The significance of human flourishing for schools (Bedford way paper). London: Institute of Education Press.Google Scholar
  14. Sellars, W. (1997). Empiricism and the philosophy of mind. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  15. Vygotsky, L. (1987). The collected works of L. S. Vygotsky. Vol 1: Problems of general psychology (eds.) R. W. Rieber & A. Carton). New York: Plenum PressGoogle Scholar
  16. Williams, M. (2001). Problems of knowledge: A critical introduction to epistemology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Young, M. (2006). Education, knowledge and the role of the state: The “nationalisation” of educational knowledge. In A. Moore (Ed.), Schooling, Society and Curriculum. London: Routledge Falmer.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Scott
    • 1
  1. 1.Curriculum, Pedagogy & AssessmentUniversity College London Institute of EducationLondonUK

Personalised recommendations