Technological literacy in a developing world context: the case of Bangladesh.
In: PATT-22: 'Pupils Attitude Towards Technology' Conference, 24-28 August 2009, Delft, Netherlands.
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At 900 persons per square kilometre, Bangladesh is one of the most densely populated countries of the world and is similar to many developing countries in that nearly half the population is under 19 years of age. On average 41% of the population do not complete Primary Education, completion rates being as low as 27.5% in some areas. The reasons for such high school drop-out rates are complex: family poverty, teaching quality and the quality of teacher/student interaction, the school environment and lack of resources all playing a part. A crucial factor, however, is the nature of the school curriculum and its perceived relevance by students and parents.
This paper analyses the nature of the technology curriculum as part of the basic education offered to children in government and non-government schools. A framework of analysis using three inter-related strands is considered: the curriculum rationale (focusing on the specified curriculum); teacher knowledge (focusing on the enacted curriculum); and student learning (focusing on the experienced curriculum).
A consideration of these strands in a developing world context, centred on the relevance of the school curriculum in relation to technological understanding as perceived by children and parents, may have wider implications for the assumptions about the curriculum for ‘technological literacy’ in other more developed countries as well as for politicians within Bangladesh itself.
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