Competency 9:

Demonstrate a deep understanding of overarching disciplinary concepts

Curriculum development in BC has has been redesigned to:

  • Make curriculum more flexible to better enable teachers to innovate and personalize learning
  • Reduce the prescriptive nature of current curricula while ensuring a solid focus on essential learning
  • Focus new curricula on higher order learning, giving emphasis to the key concepts and enduring understandings (big ideas) that students need to succeed in their education and their lives
  • Make explicit the cross-curricular competencies that support life-long learning
  • Respect the inherent logic and unique nature of the disciplines while supporting efforts to develop cross-curricular (transdisciplinary) units
  • Integrate Indigenous worldviews and knowledge
  • Develop assessment and evaluation programs that align with the changed emphases in curriculum

As you learn to teach, you need to both understand the underlying concepts and uniqueness of each discipline while helping learners make connections between and among these disciplines.  Integrated in all of this are the core competencies (Thinking, Communication and Personal and Social Responsibility) and First Peoples Principles of Learning.


  • Examine the curriculum for a specific disciplinary area.  How do you see the guiding principles described above in the curriculum?
  • How would you describe the disciplinary concepts from a subject area to someone who was not familiar with it?
  • What examples have you seen or experienced where the concepts of the discipline were shared with the learners?
  • What assessment methods (formative and summative) could assess a learner’s understanding of these big ideas?  How might they be different for different students?
  • How do teachers acknowledge individual students perspectives on the “big ideas”?