SWOT ANALYSIS OF BIOLOGY STANDARDS CLASS 9-12
• Topics and learning outcomes for NCP 2023 have been written in comparison with NC 2006, IB, and Cambridge curriculum (CAIE A Levels 2025 – 2027) in order to ensure grade-level appropriateness of subject content.
• The Biology sub-contents are added in order to ensure the progression and connectivity among the concepts under each domain.
• The field of biology has changed in the last 20 years, so the revised biology standards focused on introducing the contemporary way of approaching biology.
• Learning Outcomes are made simpler as compared to NC 2006.
• Biology standards proposed a new methodology for conducting and examining the analytical skills with the same experiments content at HSSC level.
• Some topics are revised in order to align Biology with STEAM. For example, for each topic there are SLOs added that help students appreciate the connection of the concepts with Technology and Engineering, and a component called Nature of Science has been added that helps students appreciate the connections with the Arts and Mathematics.
• Revised SLOs aim towards the conceptual understanding, activity based and enhance creativity of students rather than rote memorization or theoretical.
• The revised Biology curriculum provides value addition teaching-learning resources and assessment practices.
• SLOs have been drafted that make connections between Biology concepts and their applications in real life.
• Each implementation stakeholder will require a separate set of detailed guidelines and support to use the NCP 2023 for Biology which could be itself a challenge to prepare in order to fulfill the need.
• The emerging topics added as new SLOs may need further refinement in order to ensure that they are grade-appropriate in terms of difficulty for students.
• This standard may need changes or flexibility in order to be feasibly implemented for Madaris, differently abled students, out-of-school children, etc.
• Standards in Biology are kept aligned from class 6-12, however, there may be editions needed in order to make them appropriately aligned with examination tests such as MCAT, ECAT etc.
• Biology curriculum is assumed to be a good theoretical curriculum, however, the diversity of curriculum is not tested yet. Therefore, this content or new addition may be biased that this is internationally developed but not contextualized.
• The revised content & SLOs are not yet reviewed by stakeholders working in public/private organizations such as teachers, assessment experts, school managers etc at 9-12 level and also the visionary perspective of university faculty working at the graduate level has not yet been taken.
• The standard document is based on Bloom’s Taxonomy and it is assumed that its level of thinking of the said taxonomy (such as comprehension, application, analysis etc.) is not used appropriately in student’s learning outcomes.
• The revised content & SLOs is not reviewed by stakeholders working in public/private school teachers at 9-12 level and also the visionary perspective of university faculty working at graduate level was not taken.
• The standard document is based on Bloom’s Taxonomy and there may need to be further refinement in order to ensure a good balance of higher and lower-order thinking skills and learning outcomes.
• The SLOs may require refinement in order to be feasibly implemented in schools across Pakistan that may not all have the same level of classroom and lab facilities.
• The inclusion of content about various fields of science that students can pursue and potential career options they can have may benefit from further deliberation from the external stakeholders.
• The new vision of assessment based on conceptually based SLOs may not be easy to implement without significant training of teachers and board exam designers and exam checkers.
• The curriculum may benefit from detailed comparative analysis with the curricula of countries similar to Pakistan, similar to what has been currently done with the Cambridge, IB and 2006 National Curriculum SLOs.
• Biology standards will change the dynamics of working for textbooks writing & assessment practices
• Separate sets of guidelines with respect to the needs of stakeholders should be developed for the implementation of learning outcomes.
• The standard document will provide opportunities to experts working at level 9-12 and HEC such as the dean of university to identify the level appropriateness of new content & LOs and recommendations.
• Its implementation analysis may be carried out to check in sample schools to verify LOs and learning resources.
• Curriculum guidelines on how to teach biology in low-resource classrooms can help teachers to teach the content effectively.
• Technical & Digital content of this subject could enhance the 21st century of teachers and students.
• For the effective implementation of biology 9-12 standards, there should be training of teachers, assessment experts, textbook writers, reviewers and school managers
• In the Biology curriculum the STEAM topics will build the connection among science subjects, furthermore it will also enhance the application based study at HSSC level.
• Revised SLOs will create new opportunities for public school students to compete with students of O/A level, IB stream.
• The revised methodology for conducting and examining the practicals of Biology will require training and re-organizing the structure for its implementation.
• A few topics are important in Biology 9-12 such as evolution & reproduction etc. but Including such topics in Biology such as evolution could lead to controversy from the Pakistani context.
• The curriculum guidelines for biology standards may not be well received by all kinds of stakeholders during its implementation.
• The availability of textbook writers and reviewers having the expertise to develop resources as per spirit of standards 2023 will be a challenge.
• There may be differing feedback and disagreement with each other from the many stakeholders who will be consulted in finalizing this curriculum, and it may not be possible to satisfy everyone.
• SLOs in biology in absence of detailed curriculum and teaching supporting resources (such as online educational material and extensive lesson activity designing resources) are at risk, as teachers may not be able to understand the vision and feel confident in implementing the curriculum in its true spirit.
• There may be a need for more guidance in the curriculum on the possible career paths available in the local and international market.
• There may be challenges to implement in schools that have limited access to resources such as multimedia, educational technology, sufficient classroom space, and well-equipped laboratories in the urban/rural context.
• The activity-based learning approach encouraged by the curriculum may be challenging to implement given that many educators and schools will already be set in their traditional ways of teaching, and may have limited access to professional development resources.
• Teachers may not cover the SLOs of the curriculum in sufficient depth and breadth as per the allocated time (credit hours) on each topic.
• The quality of the curriculum could be compromised due to external pressures.
• The teachers and examination boards may not get enough training to improve the examination (paper, marking & pattern) for students.