ERIC Number: EJ851027
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 73
Social Studies, Social Justice: W(h)ither the Social Studies in High-Stakes Testing?
Teacher Education Quarterly, v36 n1 p43-58 Win 2009
High-stakes, standardized tests have become ubiquitous in public education in the United States. Teachers across the country are feeling the intensified pressures from high-stakes testing policies and are responding to these pressures by teaching to the tests in varying ways (Renter et al., 2006). Given the hegemony of high-stakes testing in schools today, this article seeks to explore the question: "W(h)ither the social studies in high-stakes testing?" Drawing on the available body of empirical research, the author argues that social studies teachers are feeling the pressures of high-stakes testing, and that these pressures are causing social studies teachers to alter their classroom practices and curriculum. Further, the author posits that the social studies represent a special case in relation to other subjects because the changes to pedagogy and content are variable, and the amount or significance of these changes depends on specific factors such as test design or whether or not individual sanctions are tied to student performance on the tests. Finally, the author argues that, because of the consistent variability connected to social studies teaching in relation to high-stakes tests, social studies education, in many instances, is positioned to provide an education that challenges the hegemonic norms of high-stakes testing generally as part of a broader need to teach for social justice in today's schools.
Descriptors: Social Justice, Standardized Tests, High Stakes Tests, Social Studies, Public Education, Educational Practices, Item Analysis, Curriculum Research, Curriculum Evaluation, Literature Reviews, Influences, Case Studies
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Adult Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States