The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Teaching and learning in a competence-based curriculum: the case of four secondary schools in England

Byrne, Jenny, Downey, Christopher and Souza, Ana (2013) Teaching and learning in a competence-based curriculum: the case of four secondary schools in England Curriculum Journal, 24, (3), pp. 351-368. (doi:10.1080/09585176.2012.731008).

Record type: Article


This paper focuses on four case study schools that have adopted innovative competence-based curriculum projects in Year 7 for a variety of educational and social reasons. The paper discusses the issues and challenges posed by the competence-based curriculum for teachers in the daily life of the classroom. Philosophical ideas about the purpose of education vary because they are driven by ideological positions. Consequently the nature and structure of the curriculum influenced by the stance adopted inevitably affects approaches to teaching and learning. It is contended that changes to the curricula in the case study schools have revealed tensions between traditional approaches to teaching and learning with ‘strong’ classification and framing and the new more progressive approaches with ‘weak’ classification and framing (Bernstein 1973). These tensions impact on teachers’ identities and this can make effective classroom practice problematic. The paper concludes that managing the tensions between traditional and more progressive pedagogies is worthwhile as this will enable students to become more fully integrated, and successful participatory members of 21st century society rather than simply reproducing the socio-economic status quo, or the requirements of current dominant educational discourse in England.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: September 2013
Keywords: competence-based curriculum, multidisciplinary, learning, teaching
Organisations: Southampton Education School


Local EPrints ID: 342207
ISSN: 0958-5176
PURE UUID: 91db7b5d-df48-41ec-a67d-56b25c2ee018

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 15 Aug 2012 14:43
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 05:30

Export record



Author: Jenny Byrne
Author: Ana Souza

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.