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Didaktik / Subject Related Didaktik
The relation of subject didactics to
In spite of the concept we adopt for the role of subject didactics
in the totality of the instructional process, its relation to general
didactics is essential. This relation can be interpreted in various
ways (Kron, 1993, pp. 36-37). Usually we put them opposite to each other
with their respective background disciplines. Every school subject has
its own base, some in an academic discipline. In teacher education general
education forms the background. When we form the intersection of the
base discipline and education we get a subject didactics (e.g. Glöckel,
1990, pp. 316-324).
Plöger (1991; 1994) has described the development of the relation between
general didactics and subject didactics in Germany. He states that the
dialogue between general didactics and subject didactics that began
in the early 1950s gradually diminished and gained special subject didactics
emphases. Plöger claims that certain special questions in subject didactics
came to the fore, leaving the theme of the relation between general
didactics and subject didactics in the background. Questions like the
selection of the themes, the position of a subject among other subjects
and the hierarchy between subjects, became important in the debate.
This trend was closely connected to the reform of teacher education
in Germany and the representatives of subject didactics considered themselves
as belonging more to the realm of their subject than to pedagogy.
Klafki (1994) has summarised the relation between general didactics
and subject didactics in five statements:
The relation between general didactics and subject didactics is
not hierarchical by nature. Their relation is, rather, reciprocal.
It is not therefore possible to deduce subject didactics from general
didactics. They both deal with the same problems and although naturally
a certain subject has its typical characteristics their difference
lies predominantly in the possibility of generalising their solutions
and decisions. Reduction of subject didactics to general didactics
is not possible and general didactics has no immediate consequences
in subject didactics.
The relation of general didactics and subject didactics is based
on equality and constructive co-operation. Their approach may, despite
that, be divergent.
General didactics and subject didactics are necessary to each other.
The role of subject didactics between the discipline and education
is not only mediatory, it must be seen also as independent with
its own contributions to the common area of education and the subject.
General didactics aim at as comprehensive a model as possible but
that does not mean that those models could include the entire instructional
process. The models in subject didactics may, however, be made in
How are general didactics and subject-specific didactics organized
in your studies? Choose one subject to be examined and try to find out
how it is represented in the university and in the school. What are
the central problems in the subject-didactics in this subject.