In the Know: Filipino curriculum in tertiary level | Inquirer News

In the Know: Filipino curriculum in tertiary level

/ 05:19 AM April 23, 2015

MANILA, Philippines–Studies on the country’s bilingual education program have revealed very low proficiency levels among teachers and students in the use of Filipino and English.

At the tertiary level, the government’s policy of nurturing the national language has not been a priority as many educational institutions put more emphasis on the use and teaching of English.


In 1996, the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) issued Memorandum Order No. 59, or the General Education Curriculum (GEC), to be implemented in all baccalaureate degree programs starting in school year 1997-1998.

The minimum requirements for the mandatory GEC include nine units each for Filipino and English subjects, the first time for both languages to be given equal treatment in a curriculum.


In 1997, CHEd released Memorandum No. 4, setting a minimum requirement of six units each for the Filipino and English subjects for non-Husocom (humanities, social science and communication) courses.

The three mandatory Filipino subjects in the tertiary level, meriting three units each, are Komunikasyon sa Akademikong Filipino (FIL 1); Pagbasa at Pagsulat Tungo sa Pananaliksik (FIL 2); and Masining na Pagpapahayag (FIL 3).

FIL 1 is a metalinguistic study of the Filipino language, focusing on the structure, function and relevance of the Filipino language in the academic field.

The use of the Filipino language in research writing and critical reading are the core objectives of FIL 2, while FIL 3 highlights the use of the Filipino language in creative communication.

In 2013, CHEd issued CMO No. 20, or the revised GEC, in line with the K-12 Basic Education program implemented in 2011.

The new curriculum will be freed from Science, Mathematics, English, Filipino, Literature, Humanities and Social Studies subjects that are “more appropriately taught in senior high school.”

Although the philosophy of liberal education underpins the GEC, the CMO aims to produce students “secure in their identity as individuals and Filipinos” and who are “aware and proud of… [their] collective identity and able to contribute meaningfully to the development of Filipino society at local and national levels,” CHEd said in a statement.–Inquirer Research

Sources:, and Official Gazette

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