Deliberation refers to a particular kind of discourse that might best be described as rational argumentation directed towards deciding on a course of action. It proceeds typically by considering the meaning and significance of the issue to be resolved, proposing and considering various courses of action that might resolve the issue, giving reasons for and against each, and weighing the relevance and importance of all these considerations in order to settle on the most fitting course of action. Deliberation became an important topic in the study of curriculum in the 1960s with the publication of the practical papers by Joseph Schwab. In these seminal papers Schwab deplored the ‘inveterate and unexamined reliance on theory’ by professional educators writing about curriculum and argued for a practical orientation employing deliberation. Subsequent investigators have found deliberation in use in a variety of curriculum-making contexts. They have begun to study the specific forms that curriculum deliberation takes in various settings and to identify criteria distinguishing more or less successful deliberation. The concept of deliberation supplies a useful conceptual framework for studying the work of curriculum makers.