You are on page 1of 1

Curriculum Manual Appendix P 78

“Towards a THEOLOGY of TRAINING METHODS”


Questions raised by Dr. Robert W. Ferris
in a Conference paper delivered to the South Pacific Association of Bible Colleges,
Australia, in 1993.
The following questions relate to attitudes that we all have towards any form of curriculum or
course development. They all need to be addressed if we are genuine in wanting an effective
curriculum that “scratches where it itches”.

EMPHASIS and ETHOS


Priorities in Education: What order of priority should be given in Christian education to:
a) attitudes? b) learning techniques? c) content? d) relationships?

OPENNESS to ALTERNATIVES
Learner involvement: How can opportunity be given for the learner to contribute towards the
process of formulating goals? Is there room for re-formulating during the learning process?
Serendipity (happy chance discoveries): How can opportunity be given for alternative avenues of
enquiry, and for unplanned, fortuitous discoveries to be made?

JOINT RESPONSIBILITY: SHARING, PROVIDING and BUILDING on EXPERIENCE


Partnership in learning: If students and their sending churches were to be involved also in the
process of curriculum planning, what knowledge, experience and emphases would possibly
be brought to the task by: a) the student?
b) the sending church or congregation?
c) the ministry educator or curriculum designer?
Field-work: How can work in the Church / Community be adequately guided and monitored?

STUDENT RESPONIBILITY
Critical Reflection: How can personal reflection and group analysis of what has been done in the
field be fostered?
Self-examination: How can students learn to examine their own previously held values, beliefs
and behaviours?

STUDENT OWNERSHIP
Self-direction: How can students be motivated to direct their own learning and become
independent of their teachers for continuing their learning?
Elective courses (optional, student-chosen): How feasible are opportunities for students to take
elective courses within the over-all curriculum? What constraints restrict offering elective
courses?

THE CURRICULUM DESIGNER’S RESPONSIBILITY


Subjectivism: will the curriculum be manipulated to meet the personal values or interests of the
curriculum designer?
Facilitation, not dictation: How can the curriculum designer ensure that (s)he is facilitating
student learning, not prescribing what the curriculum should be?

SETTING GOALS and ASSESSING OUTCOMES


Tyler’s four basic questions:
Objectives: What are our educational goals?
Methods: What learning experiences are needed to achieve these goals?
Curriculum: How can these experiences be organised effectively?
Evaluation: How can we evaluate how far we are achieving our goals?