Taking the recently released Junior Secondary School Chemistry Curriculum (JSSCC) in the People's Republic of China as a case, this paper approaches the issue of how to realize the idea of scientific literacy within a secondary school science curriculum. Subject matter and its companion meanings were used as the framework to explore the embedding of scientific literacy. Two methods were employed in this study: document analyses and interviews with key informants involved in designing the new JSSCC. From the analysis of the curriculum documents relevant to the JSSCC, it is evident that the idea of scientific literacy has been reflected substantially in the new JSSCC. The embedding of scientific literacy can be explained with reference to sociopolitical background and the national curriculum policies at the macro-level, and to the roles played by chemistry educators, in lieu of academic chemists, at the micro-level. This paper provides an example of curriculum reform in which principles associated with scientific literacy are embedded in the formal curriculum. Copyright © 2005 Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business.
CitationWei, B., & Thomas, G. P. (2005). Rationale and approaches for embedding scientific literacy into the new junior secondary school chemistry curriculum in the People's Republic of China. International Journal of Science Education, 27(12), 1477-1493.