Curriculum theory and teacher education.
Rajah, Dharamrajh Sunderajh.
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It will be generally accepted that teacher education is an important factor underpinning the quality and success of the schooling system in South Africa. Key agenda items in the debate and discourse on the provision of teacher education, in parliamentary and extra-parliamentary circles, include teacher empowerment and professionalization, and teacher education curricula, programmes and policies in the context of an apartheid society in transition to a future democracy. The present study is a contribution to that debate. It focuses on selected aspects of the pre-service teacher education curriculum at one university Faculty. Data de rived from questionnaire surveys and documentary research are analysed and interpreted within the parameters of the critical paradigm of curriculum inquiry as these are given operational definition by the transformative model of teacher education. The analyses of student and staff perceptions of the curriculum and of curriculum and instructional structures show that the dominant form of teacher education in the Faculty embodies a technocratic rationality that serves to encourage acquiescence and conformity to the status quo in both schooling and society. It is argued that such a curriculum is an anachronism, given the prospect of a "new South Africa" that has become apparent since February 1990. In that context, the dissertation makes an attempt to offer a conceptual basis for an alternative framework in the reconceptualization of teacher education.