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Alberta School Curriculum Historical Bibliography 1885-1985 (Secondary Resources)
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Scope and content
The Alberta School Curriculum Historical Bibliography 1885-1985 is a list of the materials authorized for use in Alberta schools during this time period. Many of the materials listed here are included in the archival collection of curriculum materials in the Herbert T. Coutts (Education and Physical Education) Library at the University of Alberta and may be viewed for research purposes at the library.
This bibliography was made possible by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grant. Efforts were made to identify and create a database of all the Kindergarten to grade 12 learning resources that had been authorized by the territorial authorities prior to Alberta becoming a province in 1905, and the provincial authorities responsible for education since then. This project resulted in the Historical Database of Authorized Learning Resources, from which this bibliography was produced.
The project team consisted of: Josie Tong, principal investigator, Ila Scott, project leader, and team members Maureen Beristain and Barbara Owens. Other reference staff in the Herbert T. Coutts Library were involved and provided invaluable assistance as the project progressed.
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Entries in the bibliography are filed in chronological order by date of authorization and then by alphabetical arrangement of author, title, etc.
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Original sources such as Programs of Study, Annual Reports for the Department of Education and the Council of Public Instruction, Curriculum Guides and lists of authorized textbooks were meticulously examined for titles. The database listing below is the result of this intense work. In most cases, works were specified by very brief entries giving only author, often only a partial title and a grade level. Using this information, all of the titles were verified in a number of places, most specifically: the University of Alberta Library Catalogue, the Library of Congress database and OCLC WorldCat database. Occasionally there were listings that were beyond even these resources. Although these items have been left in the database, it is speculated that there was probably a significant error in the original source listing that would cause these resources to be unverifiable.
From 1885 to 1910, grade levels were recorded as Standards. Standards I, II, III, IV and V were the elementary level and Standards VI, VII and VIII were the secondary level. From 1910 to 1935, the convention used was grades listed in Roman Numerals. At this time elementary level comprised grades 1 through 8 (e.g. Gr. I, II, III, etc.) and secondary comprised grades 9 to 12 (Gr. IX, X etc.). For the purposes of simplicity, the notation "Standard" was used in the database for the years 1885 to 1910 and from 1911, the arabic numeration (e.g. Gr. 1, 2, 3, etc.) is used for all grades.
Approval dates are summarized in each record and then dates within the record are given for the subject and grade level. (E.g. Approval: 1922; 1924; 1929 and then within the record itself: Fiction; status: other; Reading and Literature; level: Gr. 2; approved: 1922, 1924, 1929.) It may be assumed that the item in question was used throughout the entire period - in this case from 1922 to 1929, however, there is no way to verify that information.
All resources in the database are listed as either "basic" or "other". The basic designation was given to resources that were authorized texts and learning materials. The "other" designation was applied to everything else (e.g. teacher references, student references, etc.).
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