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ERIC Number: ED542502
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Dec
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
ISSN: ISSN-1324-9320
Literacy and the Australian Curriculum: Mixed Messages, but Ones That Are Hard to Shake
Lu, Weijia; Cross, Russell
Australian Association for Research in Education (NJ1), Paper presented at the Joint Australian Association for Research in Education and Asia-Pacific Educational Research Association Conference (AARE-APERA 2012) World Education Research Association (WERA) Focal Meeting (Sydney, New South Wales, Dec 2-6, 2012)
The Australian Curriculum has extensive references to literacy. It appears as not only a core strand within English, but also as a General Capability for the Curriculum as a whole. Such considerable focus leads to the question of what literacy actually means within such a context, and this paper aims to better understand the conceptualising of literacy presented in the rhetoric of the Curriculum. Beginning with a discussion of conceptualisations of literacy within education systems, we then focus on approaches to understand curriculum as a foundation for examining the discourse of literacy within the Curriculum. We then conclude by interrogating inconsistencies between these claimed and suggested messages. We find that the "claimed" message of the Curriculum is one emphasising a functional approach to literacy, with less direct (but nevertheless clear) references to the importance of developing a critical perspective. An emphasis on basic literacy, however, becomes very evident in the "suggested" messages underlying literacy within the Curriculum. Such findings resonate with other literature on the retreat from critical and other forms of literacy within current curricular reforms. This is a trend that we see continuing within the Australian Curriculum, despite being an ostensibly progressive text.
Australian Association for Research in Education. AARE Secretariat, One Geils Court, Deakin ACT 2600, Australia. Tel: +61-2-6285-8388; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE)
Identifiers - Location: Australia