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ERIC Number: EJ824468
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Aug
Pages: 17
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2745
Did the Sans-Coulottes Wear Nikes? The Impact of Electronic Media on the Understanding and Teaching of History
Trask, David
History Teacher, v35 n4 p473-489 Aug 2002
Historians are living in a challenging era. As products of the age of print, teachers must find effective ways to introduce the study of history, an academic discipline embedded in the conventions and understandings of print media, to students whose facility with the print world is limited. It is electronic media with which they are most familiar. This is a new challenge for a profession built on the assumption that historical understanding evolves as the appearance of new articles and monographs requires a rethinking of familiar but gradually changing interpretations. Students do not live in this world. It is electronic media that are shaping student understanding of some of the foundational notions of significance, sequence, institutions, and human agency. Because professional history developed its conventions and goals--and achieved a dominant place in curricula--within the world of print, it is imperative that historians now reconsider what they do in the classroom. They must address the problem of how to reach students and insure historians a place in an emerging curricula that responds to the perceptions and experiences that are part and parcel of the world of electronic media. The goal of this essay is to use media theory to suggest that a fuller understanding of how electronic media have reshaped the understandings, perceptions, and expectations that students bring to the classroom is the necessary first step to providing effective instruction able to convey a sense of the historical to students. For the purpose of this analysis the term "electronic media" includes both television and computer/internet technologies, although the latter receive the most attention. (Contains 34 notes.)
Society for History Education. California State University, Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90840-1601. Tel: 562-985-2573; Fax: 562-985-5431; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A