Placement in the Curriculum
Carrier Subject alone
Integration / Infusion alone
Carrier Subject alone
Skills-based (health) education to prevent HIV/AIDS is integrated into an existing subject which is relevant to the issues, such as civics, social studies or health education. Conclusion: good short-term option.
- Teacher support tends to be better than for infusion across all subjects;
- Teachers of the carrier subject are likely to see the relevance of the topic to other aspects of the subject;
- Teachers of the carrier subjects are likely to be more open to the teaching methods and issues being discussed due to their subject experience;
- Training of teachers is faster and cheaper than via infusion;
- Cheaper and faster to integrate the components into materials of one principle subject than to infuse across all;
- The carrier subject can be reinforced by infusion through other subjects.
- Risk of an inappropriate 'carrier' subject being selected, e.g., biology is not as good as health education or civic education because the social and personal issues and skills are unlikely to be adequately addressed.
Skills-based (health) education is taught as a specific subject to address HIV, perhaps in the context of other important issues, such as health education or health and family life education. Conclusion: good longer-term option.
- Likely to have teachers who are focused on the issues, and more likely to be specifically trained (but not guaranteed);
- Most likely to have congruence between the content and teaching methods in the subject, rather than shortcutting which may occur through 'infusion' or 'carrier subject' approaches.
- The subject may be attributed very low status and not seen as important, especially if not examinable;
- Requires additional time to be found in already overloaded curriculum.
Integration/ Infusion across subjects
Skills-based (health) education to prevent HIV/AIDS is included in all or many existing subjects through regular classroom teachers. Conclusion: least effective option. (See "The case against integration")
- A "whole schools" approach can be taken;
- Utilizes structures that are already in place and is often more acceptable than a separate course of FLE or sex education;
- Many teachers involved — even those not normally involved in the issue
- High potential for reinforcement.
- The issues can be lost among the higher status elements of the subjects;
- Teachers may maintain a heavy information bias in content and methods applied, as is the case with most subjects
- Very costly and time consuming to access all teachers, and influence all texts;
- Some teachers do not see the relevance of the issue to their subject;
- Potential for reinforcement seldom realized due to other barriers.