ERIC Number: ED205426
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: 0
On Teaching the History and Philosophy of Geography.
To shed light on the question of whether college geography students should be and/or are being instructed about the history and philosophy of geography, a survey was undertaken to determine the educational objectives and practices of geography educators. Approximately 215 American and Canadian geographic educators and chairpersons of geography departments were asked to respond to questions regarding the desirability of offering a course on the history and philosophy of geography and regarding the availability and status of a history and philosophy course in various degree programs. Findings indicated that most respondents regarded a history and philosophy course as unimportant in an undergraduate program, somewhat important in a masters program, and quite important in a doctoral program. However, many departments of geography do not offer history and philosophy of geography courses at any level because of a variety of reasons, including lack of interest among students and faculty, lack of professional expertise among faculty on the topic, and lack of funds to develop a new course. The author claims that this lack of interest and expertise in the history and philosophy of geography threatens the capability of the discipline to educate properly. Reasons offered for the importance of the topic include that it is intellectually challenging, promotes self-awareness and identity among geography students, and alleviates students' confusion due to existing and emerging paradigms of thought and explanation within the discipline of geography. (DB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (Los Angeles, CA, 1981).