Curriculum Language Education and Curriculum Standards Thesis

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Curriculum

Language Education and Curriculum Standards on the National and Local Scale.

Language education has always been an important issue in the United States. This is particularly in this country as a result of the rich variety of languages that are found among its diverse citizens. Furthermore, language is the foundation of communication. In order to build a strong and unified nation in the country, it is vital that not only education, but also communication, be both standardized and clear. Only if communication in English can be established with clarity, can the United States claim to be the truly democratic country it professes to be. Such democracy begins with education, and specifically with language education.

The objective of the research is therefore to investigate the national and state standards as these pertain to English education in the United States. The origins of these standards will also be investigated in order to identify past and future trends in the education system. It is therefore an attempt to analyze the current education system for its advantages and disadvantages, as well as a determination of the goals and whether these are adequately reached.

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The research is important, because language is such a primarily important issue in human and social life, as mentioned above. Language is used for a variety of social and professional purposes beyond education. It prevails in all areas of life. It is therefore vitally important that English education be adequately presented from the earliest school age. This is what the National and State Standards attempt to accomplish, and the aim of the research is to study the adequacy of this attempt.

Thesis on Curriculum Language Education and Curriculum Standards on Assignment

According to Susan Chira (1992), national curriculum standards for English teaching were still under debate during the time of writing her article. According to the author, such standards had been implemented in the United Kingdom, with varying amounts of success. The debate surrounding the issue at the time revolved around issues of raising the standards on the one hand, and excessive detail as opposed to teacher freedom in the classroom. In Britain, the national standards have won wide praise and acceptance for their effect upon equality in the classroom. Although the areas of mathematics and science revealed the need for much more teacher training, areas such the language arts benefited greatly from the standards.

The issue of national tests was also addressed in the national standards debate. Formulaic multiple-choice questions are discarded in favor of questions designed to test certain abilities more thoroughly. These tests were also to be introduced in the United States' system of education. The origin of the United States system is therefore based upon the British model of National Standards for the curriculum. According to the British standard of the time, all students up to the age of 14 are obliged to study English, science, mathematics, technology, history, geography, art, music, a modern foreign language and physical education.

In 1998, Caryn Robertson addressed the debate regarding the advantages and disadvantages of a national curriculum. She presents various viewpoints on the issue. Jeanne Allen, the president of the Center for Education Reform, for example says that a national curriculum appears favorable only on its surface, with all students educated to an equal level of excellence and provided with an equal opportunity to enter college and eventually the workforce.

She however also warns that such a system could detract from the valuable input from parents and communities in the existing system of individual state standards. The curriculum at the time was based upon a system where each state developed its own voluntary system of standards. However, Allen also notes that it is important to have some form of national concept regarding the standards to which each state should uphold their curriculum. She therefore advocated a stronger national system against which state standards could be measured. The one in place at the time was the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).

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