Enhancing teachers' curriculum as praxis: a self-directed learning capability approach
At present, teachers' curriculum as praxis is a pivotal concept for effective curriculum implementation. My study thus focused on developing and determining the support, underscored by self-directed learning (SDL) capabilities, to assist teachers to be able to enhance their curriculum as praxis. SDL is defined by Knowles (1975:18) as the "process in which individuals take the initiative, with or without the help of others, in diagnosing their learning needs, formulating learning goals, identifying human and material resources for learning, choosing and implementing appropriate learning strategies, and evaluating learning outcomes". Supporting Knowles' (1975) definition, the capability approach is concerned with individuals' actual (functionings) and potential (capabilities) welfare to become the person they would want to be (Kuklys & Robeyns, 2010:12). In my study, SDL and the capability approach were utilised to support teachers, through self-directed professional development (SDPD), to become the teachers they would want to be or could be in the 21st century, in terms of enhancing their curriculum as praxis. To explore how teachers can be supported in enhancing their curriculum as praxis from an SDL capability approach, a qualitative study was conducted in 2019 with teachers teaching Grade 9 learners. The teachers initially participated in individual semi-structured face-to-face interviews to determine their understanding of the curriculum, their stance on their curriculum as praxis, as well as their utilisation of SDL capabilities at the time of my research. After these interviews, an SDPD of three to five months (January to May 2019), followed. Follow-up individual semi-structured face-to-face interviews were then conducted to determine the possibly enhanced understanding of teachers' curriculum as praxis and their utilisation of SDL capabilities. The results from my study showed that SDPD effectively supported the participating teachers to enhance their curriculum as praxis. Not all the participating teachers improved equally, but all the teachers showed improvement regarding their awareness of the choices that could assist them to enhance their curriculum as praxis.
- Education