Designing for scale: How relationships shape curriculum change

Natalie Pareja Roblin, Gemma Corbalan, Susan McKenney, Nienke Nieveen, Jan Van den Akker

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperAcademic

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    While much is known about factors affecting curriculum change, much less knowledge is available to guide the process of designing for change on a large scale. This study explores how large scale innovations can achieve alignment between curricular components through interactions among various system actors. Eight prominent large-scale curriculum innovation projects were analyzed. Six key themes emerged from interview and document analysis data. Three themes related to salient relationships -i.e. strategic partnerships with (local/national) organizations; identification of individuals acting as linking pins; teacher involvement in design. Three other themes pertained to the relationships’ maintenance -i.e. visible presence; aligning goals; acknowledging the complex and interpersonal nature of relationships. Findings suggest that attending to relationships (professional and personal; strategic and unplanned; formal and informal) should be a key consideration in shaping the process of designing large scale curriculum innovations, and offer examples of how this has been accomplished.


    OtherAnnual Meeting of the American Education Research Association (AERA) 2012
    Abbreviated title2012 AERA
    Internet address


    • curriculum
    • design


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