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Applied science in the curriculum : The case of industrial science 12 in British Columbia Mackenzie, William Colin


This study investigates the disjunction between macro-level policy decisions concerning the curriculum and the lived experience in the schools resulting from those decisions. The specific case of Industrial Science 12 - a senior secondary applied science introduced in British Columbia in 1965 - is examined in some detail as an instance of this disjunction. Data for this study were gathered through archival searches and personal interviews. The archives of the former British Columbia Shop Teachers' Association and the personal papers of Professor Harry Cannon were the main sources of printed data. Personal interviews were conducted with members of the Course Development Committee, former Department of Education officials, School Board Supervisors, Shop Teachers' Association excecutive members, and teachers of the course. The British Columbia educational milieu of that time is examined, including the effects of international curriculum development projects, the Royal Commission on Education (1960), and the Technical and Vocational Training Assistance Act (1961). The deliberations of the Department of Education and, more particularly, the Course Development Committee, are scrutinized. The reaction of the British Columbia Shop Teachers' Association to the course is analyzed. The brief existence of Industrial Science 12 in the schools of British Columbia is described. Finally, conclusions are advanced to explain the difficulties the course encountered, and implications for future curriculum development in this area are discussed.

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