Critical Evaluation on "Prospective Primary School Teachers Confidence in Teaching Disciplinary History"

Akademische Arbeit

8 Seiten

teferi asfaw (Autor:in)


Critical evaluation on "Prospective Primary School Teachers Confidence in teaching Disciplinary History"

Teferi Asfaw Yidenekal was born in 1967 particularly at semen Shewa, Ethiopia. He attended both his primary and secondary school at Debersina. He also followed his B.Ed in Mekelle University and M.A at Bahir Dar University in history, since 2007-2013Currently, he have been serving as Lecturer , researcher at Woldia College of Teachers Education.

1. Introduction

As per the instruction given, I have been dedicated to going through all the points. After critically understanding the issue in the article, I was able to point out the constructive efforts of both authors in the article and their limitations in doing research . The title of the article is "Prospective Primary School Teachers' Confidence in Teaching Disciplinary History." This article was written in Finland in 2021 by Rantala, J and Khawaja, A. Professor Rantala has published articles on history education, and history curriculum. Khawaja is currently a PhD student and has published some articles.

In the main body of research the authors described since the 1990s across Europe, a new discipline called disciplinary history teaching (whose focal point is historical knowledge and the way it has been constructed) emerged. This resulted in most European countries putting emphasis on adopting disciplinary history teaching in their national curriculum. Also, Finland's National Core Curriculum calls attention to the new emerging science of historical thinking, which is disciplinary history teaching adopted in the same period . On defining the research problem authors stated, due to a shortage of time in teaching and learning, most teachers failed to make good use of disciplinary history teaching in the classroom , in similar way in-service history teacher education in Finland is challenged by inconsistency and a non-organized way of training disciplinary history teaching. In order to fill this gap, both authors require practical implementation of disciplinary history teaching. They totally decided to use 121 trainers of primary history teachers, particularly first and second years, who took the history didactics course at Helsinki University. Researchers choose 20 student-teachers for in-depth interviews and 8 students for post-interviews from a total of 121 student-teachers..The primary objective of article is to assess new trainers of primary school history teachers ''confidence in teaching disciplinary history''.

Previous research was done by Fordham (2012) on the new emerging disciplinary history in England. The main participants in the research are history teachers who are subject specialists, typically those who have first and post-graduate degrees. Fordham in the review literature shows that most history teachers had problems with knowledge of disciplinary history teaching. The leading question of study is "what understandings are required of how history teachers operate in order for the implementation of such a change to be possible." This research finding differed from Rantala and Khawaja's study by arguing that in accepting disciplinary history teaching, teachers should have knowledge in a temporal issue (teachers engage with what has previously been written) and social relation (teachers relate to the disciplinary community). Such an idea has important implications for teachers of history who must engage with that academic discipline when designing lessons for their pupils. Fordham also emphasized the importance of experience in disciplinary history training for subject specialists.

In a similar study conducted by Tambyah (2017) in Australia, researcher via case study assessed five Queensland teachers in single secondary school through interviews, observations, and FGD. The research objective is to investigate the problem of understanding and changing disciplinary knowledge. Research finds middle school classrooms where teachers are not necessarily qualified or experienced in history, most of the time, they teach factual content and lack the awareness skills to teach subjects. Tambyah argues that in order to teach skill-based history at school, all primary teachers, including beginning teachers, should have a good understanding of the use of varieties of teaching strategies and when preparing the objective of disciplinary history, it should be equally with the scope of all pupils' ability. Aside, Tambyah recommended that teacher education at colleges and university governments should provide disciplinary history teaching knowledge during pre-service teacher training programs.

Another good justification of research made into disciplinary teaching history has been offered by Rautiainen etal., (2019) study conducted in Finland examining the objectives and practices of disciplinary history, the research question is how, in more than twenty years (mid 1990s) since the changes in curriculum objectives were made, general upper secondary school teachers have come to value the curriculum objectives of history teaching and how these have impacted their teaching. The data collection instrument was collected through a semi-structured survey from total of 151 teachers who taught for ten years at upper secondary schools. Findings of the study reveals new move of Finland's national history curriculum particularly emphasize that objectives of teaching historical skills are still challenged by old views most teachers relying on content based and traditional methods of teaching. The authors argue that skill-based history teaching to be effective at classroom government of Finland should focusing matriculation tests. Writers as well advocated for long-term in-service training as well as mutual friend and age-mate support among senior secondary school teachers. In addition to these, researchers also underlined the call for an in-depth study of history teaching in senior secondary schools.

2. Summarize Research questions, Methods, Results and Discussions

The writers of the article explore the following general research question on their word put as ''How confidence do prospective teachers feel themselves to teach disciplinary history after a course which focused particularly on teaching historical thinking.'' In the Methodology part employed even so, the writers didn't stated the method used apparently on the article they may used survey design and qualitative approach . The literature section is supported by excerpts from books, reputable papers, articles, and journals written by academics.

The writers of the article collect data through in-depth interviews related to pre-course and essay writing for the purpose of gaining answers from student-teachers’ views on varieties of teaching strategies. Interims of the population of the study, researchers choose a total of 121 student-teachers for the pre-examination, finally make a decision to selecting 20 students-teachers via current grade achievement. On this I argue that, does grade achievement at the university level of a student indicates his or her knowledge? in this regard when we use in-depth interviews. According to Mcmillan and Schumacher (2001), selecting people for in-depth interviews begins with describing the desired attribute or profile of people who have knowledge of the topic.

The authors again did not put a sampling technique in vividly manner, but it seems they used a purposive sampling method. Data gathering tools were in-depth interviews and written questionnaires with a brief discussion on how to use research methods and data gathering tools. The data analysis technique is an inductive coding strategy related to grounded theory and analysis stage supported by tables, percentage with sequential manners of qualitative approach.

When proceed to the results, the authors conducted a pre-course survey by categorizing students into eleven groups and proposing an interview question about the purpose of primary school history teaching and the result showed most student-teachers had an orientation to teaching content knowledge in history education. In the time of course, writers orders students to write essays about the history teaching they have received from primary to senior schools, as well as the knowledge and skills that middle school teachers should have in order to instruct history subject , and most students' answers history education is one of the least preferred subject. After essay writing, researchers conducted post-course in-depth interviews and the result showed a lot of students -teachers prioritized content knowledge of history rather than combining it with skills based .


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Critical Evaluation on "Prospective Primary School Teachers Confidence in Teaching Disciplinary History"
ISBN (Buch)
critical, evaluation, prospective, primary, school, teachers, confidence, teaching disciplinary, history
Arbeit zitieren
teferi asfaw (Autor:in), Critical Evaluation on "Prospective Primary School Teachers Confidence in Teaching Disciplinary History", München, GRIN Verlag,


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