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Curriculum vs. Curricular: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Updated on October 15, 2023
"Curriculum" refers to a set course of study, while "Curricular" is an adjective describing things related to such a course.

Key Differences

"Curriculum" and "Curricular" both pertain to the educational sector, yet they are used differently in sentences. While "Curriculum" is a noun representing a planned sequence of instructions or a set of courses in a study program, "Curricular" serves as an adjective, describing anything related to that set course of study.
In many educational institutions, the "Curriculum" denotes the entirety of content to be taught and learned. This could range from subjects in elementary schools to specialized topics in university courses. On the other hand, "Curricular" activities would refer to events, projects, or endeavors that are part of or relevant to this academic program.
For instance, a school might have a "Curriculum" that includes math, science, and English. Concurrently, they might have "Curricular" requirements, meaning tasks or projects that students need to undertake as part of the established curriculum.
Understanding the difference between "Curriculum" and "Curricular" is essential for educators, students, and academic administrators. While both words relate to the realm of education, using them correctly in context ensures clear communication about academic courses and related activities.

Comparison Chart

Part of Speech



Set course of study
Related to a course of study

Usage in a Sentence

Used to denote the course itself
Describes something related to the course


Subjects, topics, syllabus
Activities, requirements, endeavors


What is being taught
Pertaining to what is being taught

Curriculum and Curricular Definitions


A structured course of study in an educational institution.
The school introduced a new mathematics curriculum.


Of or pertaining to a curriculum.
The school emphasizes both academic and curricular achievements.


Materials and methods used for instruction.
Teachers were trained on the updated curriculum.


Being an integral part of a course of study.
Field trips are a curricular component of the science program.


The subjects comprising a course of study in a school or college.
Students have to choose electives as part of their curriculum.


Pertaining to or related to a course of study.
They engaged in various curricular activities throughout the semester.


A set of courses and their content offered at an institution.
The university offers a diverse curriculum catered to various interests.


Connected with the subjects studied in a school or college.
There are certain curricular requirements for graduation.


The aggregate of courses of study given in a school.
The high school curriculum is designed to provide a holistic education.


Concerning the content or subjects of an educational course.
There are curricular meetings to discuss course content and methodology.


All the courses of study offered by an educational institution.


All the courses of study offered by an educational institution.


A group of related courses, often in a special field of study
The engineering curriculum.


A group of related courses, often in a special field of study
The engineering curriculum.


The set of courses, coursework, and their content, offered at a school or university.


Of, relating to, or following a curriculum.


(obsolete) A racecourse; a place for running.


Of or relating to an academic course of study


A race course; a place for running.


A course; particularly, a specified fixed course of study, as in a university.


An integrated course of academic studies;
He was admitted to a new program at the university


How do I know if an activity is "Curricular"?

If it's an integral part of the course of study, it's "Curricular".

What is a "Curriculum"?

A "Curriculum" is a structured course of study in an educational institution.

How is "Curricular" used differently from "Curriculum"?

"Curricular" is an adjective describing things related to a course of study, while "Curriculum" is the course of study itself.

Are extracurricular activities the same as curricular activities?

No, "Curricular" activities are part of the course, while "extracurricular" activities are outside the main curriculum.

Why is understanding the "Curriculum" important for parents?

It helps them understand what their child is learning and expected to achieve.

Can one school's "Curriculum" differ from another's?

Absolutely, different schools can have different curriculums.

Can students have a say in "Curricular" activities?

Sometimes, especially in higher education where course feedback is sought.

Can "Curriculum" refer to university courses?

Yes, "Curriculum" can refer to courses in both schools and universities.

Are "Curricular" activities graded?

Often, since they're part of the course of study.

Can a "Curriculum" change over time?

Yes, educational institutions often update their "Curriculum" to stay relevant.

How do "Curricular" activities benefit students?

They provide practical experience and deeper understanding of subjects.

Is the "Curriculum" only academic subjects?

Primarily, but it can also include skills or competencies to be developed.

Are there digital tools to aid "Curricular" planning?

Yes, there are numerous software and platforms for "Curricular" planning and management.

Do colleges have "Curricular" requirements?

Yes, many colleges have "Curricular" tasks or projects as part of their programs.

Are "Curricular" activities mandatory?

They usually are, as they're part of the main course of study.

Can "Curricular" also relate to training programs?

Yes, any structured course of study, including training, can have "Curricular" elements.

How do teachers fit into the "Curriculum"?

Teachers deliver the "Curriculum" and may also contribute to its design.

Who decides a school's "Curriculum"?

Often a combination of educational boards, administrators, and teachers.

Is there a global standard for "Curriculum"?

No, curriculums vary widely based on country, region, and institution.

Can a student's feedback change the "Curriculum"?

Potentially, if educational institutions value and act on student feedback.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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