Teachers’ Perceptions on the Implementation of theNew (2000) Business Studies Curriculum.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Teaching and Learning
This research describes teachers’ perceptions on the teaching of the reviewed (2000) Business Studies Curriculum in Samoa. McGee (1997) states that curriculum as a field is concerned with making decisions about what is the most worthwhile knowledge for students to learn, why they should learn it and how they should learn it. The aim of this study was to find out teachers’ views on teaching the reviewed Business Studies Curriculum in secondary schools which was drafted and documented by the Samoan Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture (MESC) Commercial Studies when it was first introduced in 1986 was a syllabus in Years 9, 10 and 11 (an outline of topics such as banking, shipping, transportation, insurance, exports and imports, employment, manufactures with one or two accounting topics). This clearly indicated an imbalance of topics between economics and accounting in all levels especially in Year 11 where it was all pure accounting. Students’ books were the only curriculum materials prepared and available for teachers to teach this old syllabus. In 2000, the Ministry of Education made changes and developments to its educational system where Commercial Studies changed its name to Business Studies, a combination of both economics and accounting topics to be taught in Years 9, 10 and 11 and become two separate subjects in Years 12 and 13. McGee (1997) believes that teachers are key curriculum decision makers. They make a number of decisions with respect to the implementation of any given curriculum and to reach these decisions, they need to take into account the learning abilities of their students, the curriculum documents, resources available and their own strengths. Teaching is a continuous activity; a teacher is in the middle or center of the class (a group of students) and the center of the classroom. (National Committee of Inquiry to Higher Education, 1997). The purpose of this research was to find out how Business Studies teachers made sense in using the curriculum materials to implement the new Business Studies curriculum. This study was conducted in two colleges in Samoa, one government (a school owned and operated by the Samoan government) and one mission (school owned and operated by the Samoan Congregational Christian Church). These schools were chosen because this would provide comparison of views of teachers who were teaching the Business Studies Curriculum. The information was collected from three visits per school, two teachers who were teaching Business Studies in Years 9, 10 and 11 were selected from each school. The first visit was to brief teachers at the start reminding them of the purpose of the research, reassure them of the confidentiality of their contributions and explain my approach. The second visit was the individual interviews with each teacher and the third visit was observation during classroom teaching.