Directions: Journal of Educational Studies Pacific Curriculum Network
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Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001

Title: The role of research : a personal perspective

Author: Taufe'ulungaki, 'Ana Maui
Subject:  Education|Oceania
 Pacific Islanders|Education
 Educational anthropology|Oceania
Volume: Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001
Collation: p. 3-13 ;

Abstract: Dr Taufe’ulungaki, herself a researcher of renown in the Pacific, interrogates the way that Pacific research has been largely undertaken by westerners, using western methodology, and underpinned by western belief systems and epistemologies. She argues that Pacific research should be undertaken by Pacific Islanders who interpret their cultures and experiences through Pacific ‘lenses’, and it should have as its primary purpose the reclamation of Pacific values and knowledge for Pacific peoples. If development plans are to be more successful than hitherto, they must be grounded in a Pacific worldview.

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Title: The role of the Forum Secretariat in education

Author: Tavola, Helen Goodwill
Subject:  Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat
 Education|Aims and objectives|Oceania
Volume: Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001
Collation: p. 14-19 ;

Abstract: When it became clear in the last decade that the goals of poverty alleviation and sustainable development are unlikely to be met if social issues are ignored, the Forum Secretariat added education to its agenda. Dr Tavola describes how the ‘Basic Education Action Plan’, which the Forum Secretariat is mandated to implement, came to be formulated, and what its key features are. This regional programme will include both formal and non-formal education, and will be complementary to national education programmes, the countries of the region participating in initial discussions so that they have a sense of ownership of and commitment to the programme.

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Title: The Fiji form 7 perscription and the language needs of first year tertiary students

Author: Mugler, France, Khan, Veena
Subject:  Academic achievement|Fiji
 Language and education|Fiji
 English language|Study and teaching (Higher)|Fiji
Volume: Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001
Collation: p. 20-49 ;

Abstract: This article is based on a study of how well students in Fiji are prepared by the Form 7 English Prescription to cope with the English language skills required in their first year at the University of the South Pacific (USP). It includes an analysis of the four major language skills in the Prescription and in the English for Academic Purposes course at USP. The views of several high school teachers and USP lecturers from different departments were also sought. Both the Form 7 and the USP students surveyed, although acknowledging certain difficulties, rate their ability in writing, reading, speaking and listening quite high. Teachers and lecturers are less positive, citing many problems they see in their students’ work. Although the Form 7 prescription does introduce students to the language skills that will help them in their first year at university, there seems to be a need to expand sections most relevant at the tertiary level. There are opportunities for teachers to create innovative strategies using material within the prescription to offer their students more challenging tasks.

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Title: Technical and vocational studies in Fiji secondary schools : a modular approach

Author: Sharma, Akhila Nand
Subject:  Vocational education|Fiji
Volume: Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001
Collation: p. 50-69 ;

Abstract: After an examination of the history of technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in Fiji and a description of the current, problematic situation, Dr Sharma suggests ways of improving TVET in Fiji. A ‘bottom-up’ approach, development programmes for teachers and administrators, integration of school-based TVET within mainstream schooling and the establishment of Institutes for early school leavers are among his proposals.

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Title: Shifting cultures : Mbu - a proposal for pluri-cultural perspective to culture in education in Papua New Guinea

Author: Mel, Michael A.
Subject:  Education|Papua New Guinea
 Multicultural education|Papua New Guinea
 Educational anthropology|Papua New Guinea
Volume: Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001
Collation: p. 70-90 ;

Abstract: The erosion of Pacific cultures by western influences is an issue that has given rise to much concern. Many feel that one way of preserving indigenous cultures is to teach them in school. In Papua New Guinea, there is a strong desire to cling to the various cultures and develop curricula that are responsive to each culture. So writes Michael Mel, but he himself believes this can become counter-productive to promoting multi-culturalism in PNG. Students should be given the opportunity to learn about other cultures, as well as their own.

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Title: Investigating tertiary level teacher-student interactions in Fiji using the questionnaire on teacher interaction (QTI)

Author: Taylor, Neil, Coll, Richard K., Ali, Sadaquat
Subject:  Classroom interaction|Fiji
 Interaction analysis in education|Fiji
 Teacher-student relationships|Fiji
Volume: Directions: Journal of Educational Studies no.45, vol.23, no.2, 2001
Collation: p. 91-112 ;

Abstract: The research reported in this inquiry consists of the application of a previously validated learning environment questionnaire developed in a western context to a culturally diverse context, namely, the Pacific Islands. The Questionnaire on Teacher Interaction (QTI) instrument was administered to intact classes of first and second year science students (n=257) at a regional university in the Pacific Islands, catering for a total of 12 ethnicities. The data reveal that the QTI instrument holds good reliability for all scales, and this may be due to the simple nature of the questions on the QTI. Surprisingly, there were few differences in perceptions of teacher-student interaction based on ethnicity, but substantial differences based on gender; females perceived their environment more favourably than males. The data for the QTI reveal that the students perceive their classrooms to be highly teacher dominated, consistent with previous naturalistic studies of secondary schools and exploratory studies at the tertiary level in Fiji. Since almost all the graduates from this institution become science teachers, a cycle is completed.

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