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‘Sites’ of Curriculum Making in Cyprus: Tracing the Emergence and Transformation of Expert Teacher-Subjects

Curriculum Making in Europe: Policy and Practice within and Across Diverse Contexts

ISBN: 978-1-83867-738-1, eISBN: 978-1-83867-735-0

Publication date: 20 January 2021

Abstract

In this chapter, we trace the emergence of a particular type of teacher subject, the subject-area counsellor, who became a key player during different phases of the recent curriculum reform in the Republic of Cyprus (2004–2017).The understanding of teachers as subjects is theoretically informed by the Foucauldian notion of discursive power that helps understand how individuals are constituted (subjectivated) and governed (subjected) through language in power relations that permeate social institutions. This type of teacher was constitutedas a hybrid expert-subject by embodying academic expertise and teaching/practical experience in classrooms. We utilize data from individual, semi-structured interviews conductedwith subject-area counsellors and elementary schoolpractising teachers during the introduction and implementation of new curricula (2011-2014), to argue that this particular type of teacher subject emerged as a meaningful and dynamic meso-level. As counsellors moved in between the Ministry of Education and Culture/Pedagogical Institute (macro-level) and schools/teachers (micro-level), it was possible to observe that multiple curriculum makings were taking place, given that subject-area counsellors sometimes opened up spaces and further possibilities of curriculum-making with teachers; but, at others, those spaces were rendered impossible when teachers expected to receive teaching materials from them, thus reinstating pyramidal traditional hierarchical-administrative roles for both.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Acknowledgements

This research was partially funded by the European University Cyprus Internal Research Grant Award (2011) and by funds from the University of Cyprus (2012–2014). We would like to acknowledge the contribution of the students enrolled in courses EDG402 and EDG216 during the Spring Semester 2011 at European University Cyprus and in courses EPA222, EPA404, and EPA612 during the Spring Semesters of 2012, 2013, and 2014 at the University of Cyprus for their help in collecting the data. We would also like to acknowledge the work of Mary Charalambous and Irene Michael for their contribution in data coding. Finally, we wish to thank all interviewees for their participation in the research project.

Citation

Kontovourki, S., Theodorou, E. and Philippou, S. (2021), "‘Sites’ of Curriculum Making in Cyprus: Tracing the Emergence and Transformation of Expert Teacher-Subjects", Priestley, M., Alvunger, D., Philippou, S. and Soini, T. (Ed.) Curriculum Making in Europe: Policy and Practice within and Across Diverse Contexts, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 53-76. https://doi.org/10.1108/978-1-83867-735-020211004

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021 Mark Priestley, Daniel Alvunger, Stavroula Philippou and Tiina Soini