Curriculum development in agroforestry: proceedings from the first inter-regional workshop for Africa, Asia and Latin America, 30 May-3 June 1994, Nakuru, Kenya uri icon

abstract

  • Institutions involved in agroforestry research and development point out the need for qualified human resources in agroforestry. Since this pool of scientists and development workers is provided by educational institutions, the starting point is to strengthen agroforestry education. A major component in any educa-tional programme is a suitable curriculum. Since agroforestry is a relatively new subject, many educational institutions have expressed their desire to strengthen their capacity to teach it, as part of other land-use sciences. For this to be achieved, there is a need to develop and review the existing curricula. ICRAF arranged an inter-regional workshop on curriculum development in Nakuru, Kenya, 25 May-2 June 1994, with the aim of exchanging ideas and ex-periences on agroforestry education and curriculum development in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The objectives were to enable participants to: â?¢ make use of existing tools for curriculum development â?¢ develop, improve and evaluate agroforestry curricula at their home insti-tutions The workshop gathered 20 participants from Africa (10), Latin America (5) and Southeast Asia (5). The central theme of the workshop was the introduction and testing of the DACUM (Developing A CUrriculuM) method for curriculum development. In a real situation, the DACUM process involves participation of employers, policy-makers, farmers, researchers, educators and business persons. In this case, the participants had to play the roles of those persons. As a result of the exercise, the participants developed a chart of duties and competen-cies/skills required for an agroforestry extensionist. The participants received the DACUM process very positively, and recom-mended it for use in curriculum development in universities and colleges. The general view was that it is applicable for practical use in the home institutions. At the end of the workshop, most participants felt that they would be able to run a DACUM workshop themselves. Using the DACUM process, the participants tested their skills by developing agroforestry training courses for extensionists and agroforestry courses at un-dergraduate level in agriculture and forestry. The participants also made an inventory of current methods for curriculum development in use in their respective regions. Several methods were listed, showing a variety of approaches to the task. Often, the relevant ministry is the approving body for the new curriculum, while in other cases, such as universi-ties in the Philippines and in Latin America, the final decision is taken by the university council. The inventory showed that employers are less involved in the process, but that their views are often captured through questionnaires or inter-views, or through participation in workshops

publication date

  • 1995