History made compulsory subject in high schools

August 08, 2022 - 17:46
The amendment was made while keeping the same stance in terms of vision, goals of the overall curriculum, and the specific features of the history subject.
Students at Trần Đại Nghĩa High School for the Gifted in HCM City during a history lesson. — VNA/VNS Photo Hoàng Hải

HÀ NỘI — History is now a compulsory subject for high school students, as per a recent document amending the 2018 general education curriculum.

Circular No. 13/2022/TT-BGDĐT, issued by the Ministry of Education and Training, requires “a rational and logical arrangement for the history subject, including compulsory and optional courses, in the high school-level curriculum.”

The highest quality must be ensured in students’ teaching traditions and personal development.

The amendment was made while keeping the same stance regarding the vision and goals of the overall curriculum, as well as the specific features of the history subject.

Keeping the exact structure of the curriculum, the change aims to enhance general knowledge at the basic educational level, providing students with a rational understanding of different topics for their development.

It will also ensure that the amount of knowledge taught is suitable for all, as well as the fundamental and systematic curriculum and career direction for high school students.

The change also aims to appreciate national history by educating in patriotism, national pride and culture, and historical traditions.

Connections and logic in the compulsory and career-oriented courses are also an area of focus.

For the subject of history, 52 school periods per year are compulsory for students, an adjustment from the previous requirement of 70 periods per year. Optional history course duration is set at 35 periods per year.

Following the change, compulsory subjects now include literature, mathematics, first foreign language, history, physical education, national defence and security education, career orientation and experience, and a local education course.

Nine optional subjects are no longer categorised into groups. Students can select to study four subjects among geography, economic and law education, physics, chemistry, biology, technology, music, and visual art.

The history textbook for grade 10 published before this amendment remains usable, as teachers have received training to deliver up to 70 classes per year. Further instructions will be provided to core teachers to deploy mass training.

High school principals said that with the optional subjects no longer divided into three groups, students are required to choose any four subjects among the nine options in addition to the eight compulsories.

The circular essentially does not create a major change in the current curriculum. Schools that have enrolled on the class of 2022, however, will need to rebuild the plan and help their students choose their options once again.

In addition to these four subjects, special learning topics were grouped into clusters in each subject, aiming to provide more specific knowledge and help students improve their knowledge and practical skills.

In each grade, students can choose three clusters of special learning topics of three subjects according to their wishes and the schools' organising capacity.

Apart from these subjects, students can also choose to learn a second foreign language or an ethnic minority language. — VNS