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Preparation for Life and Work; Education in Africa

Comparative Study with a Focus on Basic (Primary and Lower Secondary) Education in Developing African Countries.

Life and work are strongly inter-connected and preparation for both ought to take into account current developments. What does it mean to live and work in the twenty-first century? What is different in comparison to the past, and what is to be envisaged with regard to the future?

The curriculum (especially in its written form, which sets broader or more specific guidelines for learning) is only one of the factors impacting on individual and societal development, and has a mediated influence. Even a good curriculum is not effective per se, but reaches students based on teachers’ facilitation, in specific conditions. However, it is useful and interesting to analyse the written/intended curriculum - and its discourse - for it reflects in many respects the ways societies envisage learning and pr eparation for life and work through mission statements, rationales, learning objectives and outcomes, the selection and organisation of the learning content, teaching and learning methods, as well as the ways learning is assessed and valued. 

The main purpose of the "Study on Preparation for Life and Work with a Focus on Basic Education (Primary and Secondary) in Developing African Countries" was to examine the basic education (written) curricula of a range of African countries and to assess the extent to which they provide opportunities for young people to develop practical and useful skills. A further objective was to set this information in a broader context by analyzing and describing the approaches to competency and skill development adopted in contexts outside Africa.

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