Curriculum and Didaktik in 21st Century: Still Divergent or Converging?

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An intensive dialogue between US, German and other European scholars on topics of didaktik and curriculum took place during 1990s. Here, we review this dialogue and extend it into current post-2000 conversations to examine how the two education traditions are being affected by global trends in education. We employ content analysis to examine publications that derived from previous curriculum-didaktik dialogue as well as recent education policy documents and education developments in U.S. and Germany, as two core curriculum and didaktik countries respectively. Then, we exemplify the initial state and the identified changes through two logical models, which compare and contrast didaktik and curriculum theory as two educational policy systems. The results point to two key educational changes, namely the introduction of common core educational standards, i.e. national educational standards in the U.S. and introduction of external assessments in Germany. While curriculum and didaktik still hold to their traditional conceptualizations of the field, we conclude that to some extent both traditions are moving towards one another as a result of global education trends such as international assessments and the coordination of teaching and learning around research-based learning trajectories and learning progressions, in math education and science education, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Curriculum Studies
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)262-281
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2015