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The language curriculum: A social contextual perspective

  • Kathleen Graves (a1)

Abstract

This article examines curriculum from a social contextual perspective in which enactment – teaching and learning – is the central process, to which planning and evaluation contribute. It looks at the ways two kinds of contexts, target-language embedded and target-language removed, influence language curriculum planning and enactment. It provides a brief history of syllabus design and a rationale for moving beyond syllabus as the primary construct for curriculum planning. It then explores the classroom as the context of enactment and the role of the teacher as catalyst for curriculum change. It reconceptualizes the classroom as a learning community with potential links with real, virtual and imagined communities. It briefly explores integrated approaches to evaluation and assessment and concludes with examples of promising directions and suggestions for further research. Examples of practice that illustrate concepts are provided throughout the article.

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