London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

Implementing social scientific theories in curriculum and social (civic) studies: Experiences from Estonia for the future of Europe

Author(s) Haav, K.  
Publisher London: CiCe  
Year 2011  
Editor P. Cunningham & N. Fretwell, Europe's Future: Citizenship in a Changing World  
Age group -  
This paper elaborates social scientific theories for curriculum development (Autio, 2006, Dillon, 2009, Kelly, 2009, Kridel, 2010, Pinar, 2009, Ross, 2000, Young, 1998, etc.) and puts forward a social scientific model for this field. Formerly, the author has promoted a sociological system of concepts for social studies (democracy education – Haav, 2006-2010). Now, this system has been extended (Biesta, 2006, Connelly, 2008, etc.) and proposed as a model for other subjects and the whole curriculum. In this framework, Estonian national curricula (1996, 2002, 2010) and curriculum policy will also be critically analyzed. Estonian educationalists have dealt with curriculum development for more than twenty years. Still, this process has denied sociological theory any role. The general parts of these Curricula have remained isolated from subject syllabi, including those of history and civic studies. The latter have remained isolated from each other and social scientific theories of society. They rely on an absolutist concept of (explicit) knowledge and promote authoritarian national and European identities. The authoritarian relations and absolutist knowledge enable the manipulation of students and people. The paper will contribute to development of the sociological and deliberative curriculum theory for Estonia and European Union. The author challenges the manipulative theories in curriculum development and policy in Estonia so far. Keywords: Absolutist and socially constructed knowledge, sociological model for curriculum development, integrated and isolated concepts of individual, society and culture

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