Curriculum content, the issue of what to teach is fundamental. For students with intellectual disabilities (ID), the choice of educational content is crucial in a life span perspective. Curriculum research for this learner group is sparse. Drawing on a curriculum approach, the purpose of this content analytic reviw study is to analyse trends in curricular research, and discuss implications for further curricular research and policy. Curricular research articles from 1994 to 2016 were identified from databases, using systematic search procedures and specific criteria for inclusion and categorisation of the literature. Based on prior review studies, functional life skills and cognitive academic content formed the analytical fulcrum. The results showed that cognitive academic articles had the highest coverage in the literature and showed a steep increase in publication frequency compared to functional life skill articles. If curricular research on functional life skills stagnates, curriculum policy and practice may fail to provide students with ID the skills necessary for social and practical adaption in their communities. A discursive connection to normative curricular frameworks is essential to analyse and guide curricular choices. This article provides analytical insight and directions for future research in the field of curriculum research for students with ID.
This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in European Journal of Special Needs Education on 28 Nov 2017, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/08856257.2017.1408222.