SYSTEMICO-HOLISTIC PARADIGM FOR THE REFORM OF THE UNIVERSITY CURRICULUM CENTRED ON COMPETENCES
1 University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine Iasi (ROMANIA)
2 School "Stefan Barsanescu" Iasi (ROMANIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN11 Proceedings
Publication year: 2011
Conference name: 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2011
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:An important component of the higher education reform is represented by the university curriculum centered on competences based on the postmodern society demands. By continuing older preoccupations (Stanciu M.,1999, 2003), communication has as a hypothesis the systemic-holistic paradigm of school curriculum. It also valorizes theoretical contributions (De Ketele J.-M.,1996; Roegiers X., 2001; Perrenoud Ph., 2002; Allal L., 2002; Tardif J., 2006; Jonnaert Ph., 2009) regarding the training for acquiring competences from a socio-constructivist perspective.
The paradigm of higher education curriculum centered on competences allows the understanding of the complex process influenced by didactics (Chevallard Y.,1985 ; Develay M., Meirieu Ph.,1998 ; Perrenoud Ph., 1995). In 1996, De Ketele defined the competence as an ordinate totality of abilities that are practised on some contents in a certain category of situations in order to solve the problems limited to that situational area (apud Roegiers, 2001). This definition emphasizes the three constituent parts of a competence: content, ability and situation.
The definition of the competences can also be made in a metaphorical manner (transfer of knowledge or stimulation of the subject’s resources at a given time) (Perrenoud Ph., 2002, In Dolz J., Ollagnier E., Éds.). The stimulation metaphor underlines the subject’s activity, which implies “a totality of complex mental operations, connected to certain situations, rather than transforming knowledge” (ib.). The stimulation metaphor suggests “the orchestration, the coordination of multiple and heterogeneous resources” of the subject, a permanent recombination of these resources (Perrenoud Ph., 2002, op.cit.).
The development of meta-cognitive competences represents an important objective in the learning process, through which it is aimed at teaching the pupil/student how to learn. “The meta-cognitive strategies do not appear spontaneously.” At the beginning, they must have a manifested character, they must be presented by the teacher and then gradually acquired by the student (Radu, I.). Together with the universities from Bacau and Suceava, we are implementing a partnership project which aims at the development of the meta-cognitive competence of first year students (Stanciu, 2006, 2008, 2010).
Recent research performed on these topics have permitted several preliminary conclusions: the evaluation practice has not been standardized yet; the competences are not mentioned; more and more difficult tasks affect the quality of education; the evaluation activity is not considered a constituent part of professionalization (Piper, 1994); a thorough evaluation is achieved with open items; the intermediary formative evaluations permit superior quality learning (Colet, Romainville, 2006). We can also notice here the preoccupation of Liege University to develop structures that target the achievement of computer-assisted evaluation activities.
Drafting a proper methodological guide, the paper could be valorized by central institutions and universities in order to acquire a quality management for the higher education process. Hence, suggestions on the modernization of the initial and continuous training process of university professors could also be an outcome. These aspects may foster the development of a university pedagogical structure in Romania.
Keywords: Curriculum, competences, didactic transposition, systemic-holistic paradigm, quality management.