Uzbekistan Table of Contents
In the early 1990s, the greatest controversy in curriculum policy was which language should be used for teaching in state schools. In 1992 Uzbek and the other Central Asian languages were made the official languages of instruction, meaning that Uzbek schools might use any of five Central Asian languages or Russian as their primary language. Uzbek and Russian language courses are taught in all schools. After independence, a new emphasis was placed on courses in Uzbek history and culture and on increasing the short supply of textbooks in Uzbek in many fields. For a time, the Karimov regime closed Samarqand University, which taught in Tajik, as part of a broader crackdown on the country's Tajik minority.
The expansion of curricula, including the addition of courses in French, Arabic, and English, has placed new stress on a limited supply of teachers and materials. In the mid-1990s, a major curriculum reform was underway to support the post-Soviet economic and social transformation. Among the changes identified by Western experts are a more commercial approach to the mathematics curriculum, more emphasis in economics courses on the relationship of capital to labor, more emphasis in social science courses on individual responsibility for the environment, and the addition of entirely new subjects such as business management. Because such changes involve new materials and a new pedagogical approach by staff, the reform period is estimated at ten to fifteen years.
Data as of March 1996