Curriculum reform movement
In the past, it was not considered essential that all students learn rigorous content; many jobs were available for students with minimal academic skill. In today's information age, jobs that used to require low levels of reading and mathematical skill now require the worker to use and understand 1,000 page technical manuals and computer-assisted diagnosis and treatment of job-related problems (National Center on Education and the Economy, 1989).
To prepare students for this new environment, United States K-12 schools are being asked to participate in a major curriculum reform. National Educational
Goals and Standards have been developed for a number of subject areas. New curriculum content and teaching strategies ask that students not only master factual knowledge but learn to apply that knowledge by reasoning and solving novel problems. If the reform is successful, content and pedagogical characteristics of instruction will need to change dramatically as will the classroom assessments. (Porter, Archbald, & Tyree, 1991).
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