Curriculum Documents for the adult education programme

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Managing the learning experience

Although andragogy is the “art and science of helping adults learn” (Knowles, 1980:41), most of the delivery models are not very different from the traditional pedagogical practice. The teacher‟s role is said “to be redefined as that of a procedural technician, a resource person and co inquirer; more a catalyst than an instructor, more a guide than a wizard” (Knowles, 1980:49) but the reality is that most of the adult education delivery models are teacher–centred, therefore, neither transformative nor emancipatory. In managing the learning experiences, Knowles (1980) develops a typology or category checklist of the wide range of techniques available for helping adults learn. The presentation techniques are shown in Table 1 below .

Evaluating results

Knowles (1980) presents a historical perspective of adult educational evaluation. The historical narrative in adult education evaluation reveals conflicting values of dominant philosophical orientations. “The Taylorian efficiency proponents, behaviorist psychologists, experimental researchers and cost accountant on one hand and the values of self-actualization, artistic institution, free play of natural forces, and creative ambiguity management theorists and psychologists on the other hand” (Knowles 1980:201).Both schools of thought had an impact on Knowles‟ (1980) model of programme development based on andragogy, the humanist orientation element enriched the teaching of adults by emphasizing values of self-actualization. Although, the issue of philosophical orientation is still controversial in adult education literature on curriculum planning, however, the fact of the matter is that andragogy is eclectic in its approach to curriculum planning (Knowles, 1980). It is still influenced by the Tylerian principles of formulation of behavioural objectives and delivery models which focus on transmission methods of knowledge delivery as opposed to transformative and problem posing methods, which have the empowering capacity as propounded by Frère and Mezirow (2000).

3 Sampling procedure and the sample

Naturalistic investigations utilize non-probability sampling procedures by selecting cases gradually as the research progresses. They want to choose cases, events or actions that illuminate and deepen understanding. Researchers, though, need to be conscientious and acknowledge the limitations of non-probability sampling regarding accurate and precise representations of populations (Babbie, 2010). Some of the sampling methods that are commonly used in qualitative research are purposive, quota and snowball sampling. In the social sciences, the typical unit of analysis is the person, or groups of people, although there may also be other units of analysis such as general phenomena. The unit of analysis for the purpose of this study is the adult education degree graduates at ZSC. The chances of investigating the entire population are remote, if not non-existent (Babbie, 2010). Therefore, a sample is drawn from the population for research purposes.


Yin (2003) refers to credibility as the extent to which the researcher captures and represents the reality of how things really are from others‟ (informants and fellow researchers) standpoints. To establish credibility, the researcher ensured that she had a close relationship with informants, preferably from immersion in the environment, which a provided contextual richness as a basis for checking, questioning and theorizing (Miles and Huberman, 1994 in Smyth, 2006). The researcher adopted appropriate methods for a goal free evaluation whose purpose is to establish the extent to which the participants‟ real needs were being met and, to promote credibility in the study (Patton, 2003; Shenton, 2004). Thus, credibility was accomplished through methodological rigor, triangulations of document analysis, individual and focus group methods, administrators and officers as informants, triangulation of descriptions and interpretations throughout the study. Credibility of findings was also accomplished through in–depth data collection that was sought from individual and focus- group field notes and document sources (Yin, 2003).

Administrator’s Experience of the curriculum

The perceptions regarding the curriculum were revealed through the administrators‟ experiences at the ZSC and the students‟ direct experiences with the curriculum. Admin1 has a longer history with ZSC than Admin 2. Admin 1 was invited in 1988 to start educational programmes for ZSC that are similar to those pursued at UZ. The long term goal was to be an associate college of UZ. Admin 1 was involved in all the consultations, which led to the modalities of creating associate status. An agreement was reached after signing the memorandum of understanding in 1999 between UZ and Zimbabwe Staff College.


Contents :

  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgements
  • Abstract
  • Contents
  • List of tables
  • List of figures
  • List of Appendices
  • List of acronyms
  • 1 Introduction
    • 1.1 Background
    • 1.2 Curriculum design in the Zimbabwean context
      • 1.2.1 Curriculum development in the context of ZSC
      • 1.2.2 Adult Learning and Education Lifelong Policy
    • 1.3 Context of the study
    • 1.4 Problem statement
    • 1.5 Purpose of the study
    • 1.6 Aims of the study
    • 1.7 Research questions
    • 1.8 Significance of the study
    • 1.9 Definition of terms
    • 1.10 Methodological issues
    • 1.11 Theoretical framework
    • 1.12 Organization of the research report
    • 1.13 Summary
  • 2 Introduction
    • 2.1 Evaluation in adult education programmes
    • 2.2 Policy framework provision
    • 2.3 Quality of adult Education Programmes
    • 2.4 Curriculum theory
    • 2.5 Traditional approaches to curriculum development
    • 2.6 Knowles programme development based on andragogy
      • 2.6.1 Knowles‟ theoretical framework
      • 2.6.2 Knowles‟ curriculum development process
    • 2.6.3 Criticism and concerns regarding andragogy
    • 2.7 Frère‟s critical pedagogy
      • 2.7.1 Pedagogy
      • 2.7.2 Criticism for Frère‟ Pedagogy
    • 2.8 Summary
  • 3 Introduction
    • 3.1 Qualitative research approach
      • 3.1.1 Phenomenology
      • 3.1.2 Constructivism
    • 3.2 Research design
    • 3.3 Study population
      • 3.3.1 Sampling procedure and the sample
    • 3.4 Data collection methods and tools
      • 3.4.1 Document analysis
      • 3.4.2 In-depth interviews
      • 3.4.3 Focus Group Discussion
    • 3.5 Data preparation and transcription
    • 3.6 Data presentation and interpretation
    • 3.7 Validity and reliability
      • 3.7.1 Credibility
      • 3.7.2 Transferability
      • 3.7.3 Dependability
      • 3.7.4 Conformability
    • 3.8 Ethical Considerations
    • 3.9 Entering the Research Site
    • 3.10 Summary
  • 4 Introduction
    • 4.1 Quality of the Programme
      • 4.1.1 Relevance of the programme to the needs of students
    • 4.2 Policy framework in adult Education
      • 4.2.1 National Policy in Adult Education
      • 4.2.2 Zimbabwe Staff College Policy that informs Practice
    • 4.3 Curriculum Documents for the adult education programme
      • 4.3.1 Curriculum Documents Analysed
      • 4.3.2 Administrator‟s Experience of the curriculum
      • 4.3.3 Participants‟ Experience with the Curriculum
      • 4.3.4 Process of Curriculum Development between UZ and ZSC
      • 4.3.5 Participants‟ Knowledge of the Curriculum process
      • 4.3.6 Relevance of Curriculum Content Provision to the needs of learners
      • 4.3.7 Challenges related to the Curriculum Process observed by participants
    • 4.4 Meeting Organisational and Individual Needs by the Programme
      • 4.4.1 Organisational Needs as depicted by Participants
      • 4.4.2 Individual Needs depicted by participants
      • 4.5 Motivation for (None) Participation in the Programme
      • 4.5.1 Motives for joining the programme depicted by participants
      • 4.5.2 Reasons for Non-participation in the Programme in the Programme
    • 4.6 Institutional Barriers to Participation in the Programme
      • 4.6.1 Dispositional Barriers to Participation
      • 4.6.2 Situational Barriers to Participation
    • Effectiveness
    • 4.7 Teaching methods for the Programme
      • 4.7.1 Adequacy and Appropriateness of methodology
    • 4.8 Effectiveness of support Services for the Programme
      • 4.8.1 Recommended Improvements for Support Services
    • 4.9 Value of the Programme to Participants
    • 4.10 Summary
  • 5 Introduction
    • 5.1 Relevance of policy
    • 5.2 Relevance of Policy
    • 5.3 Relevance of Curriculum process
    • 5.3.1 Relevance of the Programme to Stakeholders
    • 5.4 Effectiveness of methodology to the needs of students
    • 5.5 Value of the programmed to students
    • 5.6 Summary

Evaluation of Curriculum Design and Delivery: A Case for Zimbabwe Staff College by Phoebe Kashora

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