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Preservice teachers' attitudes toward the inclusion of heritage education in elementary social studies

Author(s): Cemil C. YEŞİLBURSA | Keith BARTON

Journal: Journal of Social Studies Education Research
ISSN 1309-9108

Volume: 2;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 1;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Heritage education | Historic places | Social studies

This study explores pre-service teachers’ attitudes toward heritage education, an approach to teaching history grounded in first-hand experiences with material culture. The research was conducted at a large Midwestern university in the United States, in a methods course that included 28 pre-service teachers. Data were derived from both quantitative and qualitative instruments, including attitude surveys completed before and after classroom activities and a field trip to a local history museum; these activities aimed to introduce teachers to the meaning and purpose of using material history in elementary classrooms. We found that pre-service teachers already had highly positive attitudes toward inclusion of heritage education; that they considered heritage resources educationally valuable; and that they wanted to use such resources in their teaching. Participants’ attitudes, however, showed little or no change after participating in classroom activities, presumably because their initial perceptions of heritage materials were so uniformly positive
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