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Student participation in decision-making : a review of student participation in decision-making and its validity in terms of learning outcomes and social values


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Fuglsang, Anker J(Anker Julian) 1990 , 'Student participation in decision-making : a review of student participation in decision-making and its validity in terms of learning outcomes and social values', Unspecified thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Student participation in decision-making in secondary
education has gained a great deal of respectability over the
last two decades. Historically it is supported by
contributions from both political and educational theorists.
Recent growth in the acceptance of the approach is attributed
to the influence of social values and government sponsorship.
There are concerns that the approach is primarily a
product of social values and that it has a limited potential
to determine educational outcomes. The discussion focuses on
these concerns and develops the proposition that student
participation serves to fulfil a number of fundemental
educational purposes. It is recognised that there is a
limitation in the availability of empirical evidence to
substantiate the case for student participation. In many
cases participatory approaches are responses to new problems
that are the result of rapid and recent social change. As
such they can only be plausible and not proven at this stage.
It is suggested that : democratic socialisation is most
effectively achieved through an experience based approach
which accommodates all the varied forms of democratic
decision-making that function in our society : Individual
skill in problem solving can be enhanced through
participation in decision-making: The integration of the
student in the school community through a sharing of

decision-making responsibility can facilitate the achievement
of a wide range of educational goals as a product of
increased student motivation.

The question of the 'common curriculum' is examined and
documents from the United Kingdom and the United States
considered to determine the degree of constraint that this
movement may impose on student participation. The notion of
'client rights' is evaluated and it is concluded that any
obligation educators have to implement student decision-making
strategies springs from considerations of educational
Subject choice and student representation are presented
as limited approaches to student participation. It is
recommended that a cross curricula approach be taken to the
inclusion of a wide range of decision-making experience.
A selection of approaches to student participation is
presented. Approaches that involve students at a number of
decision-making levels are described. These include student
contributions to curriculum planning, student representation
programmes and classroom approaches, Curriculum Negotiation
and Personal Interest Projects.
The discussion is based on a number of working
definitions that are established for the key concepts of
'participation', 'decision-making' and 'client rights'.

Item Type: Thesis - Unspecified
Authors/Creators:Fuglsang, Anker J(Anker Julian)
Keywords: Student participation in administration, Curriculum planning, Curriculum change
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 1990 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Includes bibliographical references (leaves 121-129). Thesis (M.Ed.Stud.)--University of Tasmania, 1991

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