An investigation into the social sciences in the general education and training band : teachers' views and pedagogy as in relation to integration.
Since the advent of democracy in 1994, there have been several turning points in South African education. One of the key changes has been the conception of Social Sciences (SS) – a learning area under the National Curriculum Statement of 2002. The structure of SS has undergone a significant change with regard to evolving from Human and Social Sciences (HSS) to its current state – SS. The DoE claims that the SS curriculum is the result of integration – a concept which has been widely accepted in the international community. The aim of this study was to investigate the views and pedagogy of SS teachers with reference to the concept of integration. I engaged in qualitative research and employed the interpretivist paradigm when analysing my data. Research instruments included semi-structured interviews, a picture identification session and a critical discourse analysis (CDA) of key SS policy documents which inform SS pedagogy. Data were analysed through the method of open-coding. The study concluded that integration has a multitude of meanings, and the conceptualisation and implementation of it differs from teacher to teacher. Integration has now become a generic concept which can be applied to socio-political, economic, educational and environmental spheres of the SS curriculum. For this reason I argue that the SS curriculum may not be foregrounded by the concept of integration, but rather an alternate disciplinary collaboration/s such as interdisciplinarity, pluridisciplinarity and multidisciplinarity. The different disciplinary collaborations has been investigated and applied to the SS curriculum within the South African educational context.