The Diversification of Curriculum Contents and Learning Experiences in Primary School Textbooks in Post-1991 Ethiopia: The Experiences of Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Regional State


  • Lemma Setegn Department of Curriculum and Instruction, College of Education and Behavioral Studies, Addis Ababa University.


content analysis, contents, curriculum diversification, learning experiences


The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which primary school textbooks’ contents and learning experiences have been diversified to the regional context of the Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Regional State level to reflect the political, social, economic, historical, cultural life and environmental conditions. In the study, content analysis was conducted on 8 student textbooks selected using stratified and simple random sampling techniques. An interview was employed to collect data taking contents, activities, exercises, projects, and illustrations as a focus of the analysis. The collected data were classified as general when they reflect experiences outside of the regional state, but as regional/local when they were found closer and familiar to the learner and reflecting the immediate environment and related to the region. The level of diversifications of the contents and learning experiences were quantitatively analyzed using frequency count and percentages. Interviews were made with the regional level textbook writers and editors and analyzed qualitatively using narration. The content analysis on the first cycle textbooks showed that they were diversified and made to reflect the regional state’s reality while the second cycle textbooks emphasized universally established subject matter contents and learning experiences focusing more on the logical structures of the subjects than using contents and learning experiences from the regional state. However, the contents and learning experiences of the first-generation textbooks were diversified while the second-generation textbooks for the second cycle focused more on country-wide shared contents and learning experiences. The study concluded by recommending that as diversification accommodates differences, it must be further strengthened.