ERIC Number: ED151282
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Effects of a Futures-Focused Curriculum on Futures Orientation among Junior and Senior High School Students.
Thomas, John W.; Coan, Donald L.
The paper reports the results of a field test of a future studies program for students in grades eight through ten. The first section reviews the small amount of research that has been done in the area of future studies instruction. The program which was evaluated in this study is a teacher-led instructional program containing 42 to 70 class sessions. One goal of the program is to integrate skills and strategies of inventive problem solving with content and activities focused on the investigation of alternative futures. Over 300 students and ten teachers in Philadelphia schools participated in the field test. This report describes the test design, procedures, and results of only one subset of the total field test population. Eighth and tenth grade groups voluntarily chose to take either the future studies course or a traditional elective in "human society." Two measures of students' orientation toward the future were used as pre- and posttests for all groups: a questionnaire measuring attitudes toward the future (for example, optimism versus pessimism) and an essay which asked students to describe what their life might be like on a typical day 20 years in the future. Extensive statistical analysis of results showed that the experimental future studies program was fairly successful in increasing the fluency, flexibility, and originality of students' descriptions of possible futures, but it was not successful in altering their beliefs and attitudes about the future. (Author/AV)
Descriptors: Attitude Change, Comparative Analysis, Course Content, Course Evaluation, Course Objectives, Curriculum, Educational Research, Experimental Curriculum, Futures (of Society), Prediction, Problem Solving, Program Descriptions, Program Evaluation, Research Methodology, Secondary Education, Social Studies, Statistical Analysis, Student Attitudes, Tables (Data)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Research for Better Schools, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
Note: Paper presented at Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Toronto, Ontario, March 27-31, 1978)