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ERIC Number: ED380389
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Nov
Pages: 25
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Practice of In-Depth Study in an Issues-Oriented Social Studies Classroom.
Rossi, John Allen
This paper describes research that sought to merge the definition of in-depth study and its theoretical underpinnings with the reality of classroom practice. It describes and analyzes one high school public issues class where single topics were developed in depth. The research seeks to answer the question: What does in-depth study look like in practice? In particular, it explores three questions: (1) How and why is knowledge selected, organized, and utilized in the depth classroom, and what meaning do students give it? (2) What is the nature of the social interaction in the classroom, and what meaning do students give it? and (3) What practical teaching dilemmas do teachers face in the everyday practice of in-depth study? Four common characteristics of in-depth study are identified: (1) use of knowledge that is complex, thick, and divergent about a single topic, concept, or event using sources that range beyond the textbook; (2) focus on essential and authentic issues or questions that contain elements of ambiguity, doubt, or controversy; (3) a spirit of inquiry that provides opportunities, support, and assessment mechanisms for students to manipulate ideas in ways that transform their meaning; and (4) sustained time on a single topic, concept, or event. In terms of theory, the research confirms the notion that thinking about and understanding knowledge depend on: (1) its organization around key ideas; (2) a functional base where the learner uses knowledge to solve problems; and (3) a social setting where the learner interacts with teachers and students. (DK)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A