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ERIC Number: ED478392
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Apr
Pages: 25
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Life History Influence on Teaching United States History.
Coughlin, Mimi
A qualitative study explored the influences of life and family histories on high school teachers' beliefs about U.S. history. Drawing on data gathered through surveys and in-depth interviews, this paper argues that personal knowledge acts as a lens through which teachers see and project subject matter in U.S. history. Inquiring into life history influences on teachers' understandings and beliefs about history builds on an emergent strand of research about the influence of family history, race, gender, and nationality on students' understandings of history. The paper states that to explore the influences of family history and life experiences on teacher beliefs about U.S. history, the study drew on strategies used in grounded theory, life history, and narrative inquiry. It notes that 62 teachers from 33 Rhode Island schools returned completed surveys, and numerical analyses were used to identify emergent themes in the close-ended responses. The conclusion is that attention to the role personal knowledge plays in the construction of historical understandings and interpretations implies a rejection of attempts to depersonalize and standardize history teaching and learning and may point toward opportunities for meaningful and authentic engagement with the past in history classrooms. (Contains 55 references.) (BT)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A