Implementation of the competence based curriculum in the English classroom: A case study of an urban public secondary school in Zanzibar.

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)

First Supervisor/Advisor

Dr. Peter Kajoro

Second Supervisor/Advisor

Dr. Lilian Vikiru


Institute for Educational Development, East Africa


The English Competence based curriculum was introduced in Zanzibar in 2005. It puts emphasis on the students' mastery of the English language to enable them to use it in their daily life for communication purposes. Since its inception, no study has been conducted to investigate the implementation of the curriculum. This study therefore set out to explore how teachers of English implement English Competence Based Curriculum (ECBC) in the classroom. The study was conducted in a public secondary school in West Urban Region in Zanzibar. A qualitative case study design was used. The methods of data collection which were used included semi-structured interviews, classroom observations and document analysis. These methods were used to gather in depth-information on how teachers of English implement ECBC in the classroom. The data analysis process was transcribed, coded and thematically analyzed. The study reveals that, the majority of the teachers in the school studied are not aware that Tanzania changed its curriculum from content to competence based. There are also some challenges that hinder the effective implementation of ECBC such as lack of training and adequate teaching materials, language ability of both the teachers and learners, large classes and the environment. Therefore, although the English curriculum changed from content to competence based, in practice the teachers' teaching is still bases on the content based curriculum. The recommendations of the study are that the teachers should give the students ample time to practice the language, they should use English inside the classroom and outside the classroom, they should be creative in using local materials which are available in their surroundings and they should give the students feedback which will help them to increase their performance. The Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, Zanzibar with the cooperation of the teacher educators should take deliberate measures to inform the teachers about the curriculum change and give them training on how to implement the curriculum. It should also arrange to have Professional Development Courses for teachers of English to raise their own level of English language proficiency.

This document is available in the relevant AKU library