Encyclopedia of Science Education

Living Edition
| Editors: Richard Gunstone

Curriculum in Teacher Education

  • Jim Woolnough
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6165-0_216-4


Curriculum most often refers to the formal documentation designed to provide guidance about what school systems, schools, and teachers should teach. It is generally produced on behalf of governments through sometimes complex processes managed by the appropriate education bureaucracy in an attempt to offer guidance about the content for (and sometimes approach to) teaching. It is, then, a product that reflects the political, cultural, and economic contexts in which it is written. This is sometimes referred to as the “envisaged” curriculum. However, many educators also recognize the existence of an “enacted” (or active) curriculum as something distinct, that is, the reality of what is actually taught, and the range of student experiences, in the classroom.

The enacted curriculum may partially reflect the belief systems and knowledge base of the teacher or local school system delivering it. Teacher education students often receive considerable instruction about the formal...


Laboratory Work Teacher Education Program Science Curriculum National Curriculum Curriculum Design 
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  1. Guilfoyle P (1992) Legislating for excellence? National education curriculum in England and Wales, New Zealand and Australia. Parliamentary Research Service, Background Paper Number 9, Commonwealth of Australia. http://www.aph.gov.au/binaries/library/pubs/bp/1992/92bp09.pdf
  2. Smith DL, Lovat TJ (2003) Curriculum: action on reflection, 4th edn. Thomson, MelbourneGoogle Scholar
  3. Toplis R, Allen M (2012) ‘I do and I understand?’ Practical work and laboratory use in United Kingdom schools. Eurasia J Math Sci Technol Educ 8(1):3–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Westbury I (2000) Teaching as a reflective practice. In: Westbury I, Hopmann S, Riquarts K (eds) Teaching as a reflective practice. The German Didaktik Tradition, Routledge, pp 15–39Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of CanberraCanberraAustralia