Course-5 Understanding Disciplines and School Subjects pmd

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Explain the difference between school subject and academic Discipline
1.2.4. Let Us Summarise

A subject or  a field of study is a branch of knowledge  that is taught and 
researched at the school, college or university level. 

School subject refers to an area of knowledge  that is studied in school. 
It can be called learning tool or the criteria by which we learn. More precisely,
subjects are the parts into which learning can be divided. It is a field or sphere
of knowledge in which the learner has chosen to specialize.

The term discipline ‘originates from the Latin words discipulus, which means
pupil, and discipline, which means teaching. The term discipline is defined by
the Oxford English Dictionary as “a branch of learning or knowledge”.

“Academic discipline is a field or branch of learning affiliated with an academic
department of a university, formulated for the advancement of research and
scholarship. It is formulated for the professional training of researchers,
academics and specialists.”- Deng, Z (2013).

School subjects can be traditional academic subjects, such as mathematics,
history, geography, chemistry and economics that have direct relation with their
parent academic disciplines. School subjects constitute a faithful and valid
introduction to the academic disciplines whose names they bear. Students are
dealing with relatively simple ideas and methods, they study the same ideas and
methods known by experts in the academic disciplines.

The exclusive reliance of the curricular position on academic disciplines in
defining school subjects leaves out other kinds of knowledge (e.g., practical
knowledge, technical knowledge, local community knowledge, etc.) that could
be potential curriculum content.
C u r r i c u l a r
Area of
constructed based on the interests,
attitudes and feelings of learners
Learner centred constructivist
Limited to schools
Less scope for flexibility,
working within the discipline,
less scope for change of
Constructed according to the
nature of discipline and
advances according to the
nature of disciplines only when
new innovations take place.
Not learner centred
For universities and other
higher educational institutions.

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