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Social sciences in the New Zealand curriculum: Mixed messages

Jane Abbiss

The official New Zealand curriculum as it pertains to social sciences embodies tensions between newer transformative and older transmissive agendas for education, and in its disciplinary divisions. This article explores the mixed messages in the curriculum for teaching and learning within social sciences. I argue that tensions in the curriculum and its permissive nature mean that “progress” towards different forms of education in social sciences will inevitably be slow and variable. The nature of change will be contingent on practitioners’ understanding of the curriculum and of these ideological tensions.

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