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ERIC Number: ED441739
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Apr
Pages: 20
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Why Historians Accepted a Unified Social Studies: Charles Beard and the Great Depression.
Watras, Joseph
Many contemporary historians contend that the popularity of the social studies as a school subject represents the victory of educators over academicians. This view, however, overlooks the way the controversies over the social studies reflected questions about the nature of intellectual activities. From 1899, the American Historical Association (AHA) urged high schools to offer separate and disciplined history courses to exercise the students' powers of memory, imagination, and judgment. In 1923-24, however, the AHA commissioned a study of teaching that reinforced the idea of a unified social studies integrating such disciplines as history, sociology, political science, and economics. In the first report for this commission, Charles Beard expressed a position that marked his career as a historian. Beard stated that social studies should equip students with the practical knowledge and the ideals to succeed in a changing world. Although some historians felt that Beard's model threatened the ideal of objectivity in historical studies, the College Entrance Examination Board adopted this aim in 1937. Although many historians refuted Beard's call to wider, more open approaches to history, his appeals mirrored what Leon C. Marshall and Rachel Marshall Goetz wanted the elementary and secondary students to acquire as they pursued the social studies. (Contains 20 references.) (BT)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A