towards excellent historical r easoning the c ompetency of historical p erspective t aking hpt
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Towards Excellent Historical R easoning: The C ompetency of Historical P erspective T aking (HPT). Authors: Tim Huijgen , Carla van Boxtel , Wim van de Grift & Paul Holthuis Presenting author: Tim Huijgen The Netherlands HEIRNET 2014. Outline presentation. PhD research project

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towards excellent historical r easoning the c ompetency of historical p erspective t aking hpt

Towards Excellent Historical Reasoning: The Competency of Historical Perspective Taking (HPT)

Authors: Tim Huijgen, Carla van Boxtel, Wim van de Grift & Paul HolthuisPresenting author: Tim HuijgenThe NetherlandsHEIRNET 2014

outline presentation
Outline presentation
  • PhD research project
  • Theoreticalframework
  • Research questions
  • Method
  • Results
  • Discussion
phd research project 2012 2018
PhD research project 2012 – 2018
  • How do history teachers stimulate students’ ability to perform HPT?
  • How can we help students to perform HPT?
  • Performing HPT: measuring students’ ability to perform HPT
  • Performing HPT: students’ knowledge and strategies to perform HPT (explorative)
  • Stimulating HPT: development and validation of an observational protocol regarding teacher ability to stimulate HPT
  • Stimulating HPT: differences regarding teacher ability to stimulate HPT
  • Stimulating HPT: development of class material with a view to stimulating HPT (a quasi- experimental study)
theoretical framework 1
Theoretical framework (1)
  • In order to be able to explain and evaluate the past, students must learn to consistently take into account that the past differs from the present.
  • HPT is considered as a very important competency in many history curricula of different countries
theoretical framework 2
Theoretical framework (2)
  • HPT means attempting to see through the eyes of people who lived in other times and circumstances (Seixas & Morton, 2013)
  • HTP is the application of the knowledge that historical agents had particular perspectives on their world that affected their actions(Lee & Ashby, 2001)
  • However, many students suffer from presentism and therefore do not outline the historical context.
  • Presentismis the bias by which people assume that the same goals, intentions, attitudes, and beliefs existed in the past as they exist today (Barton & Levstik, 2004).
theoretical framework 3
Theoretical framework (3)
  • In order to take a historical perspective:
  • Students should use a chronological, a spatial and a social cultural frame of reference
  • Students must be able to display historical empathy
  • Students must avoid presentism
research questions
Research questions
  • Which strategies and knowledge do students use in order to successfully take a historical perspective?
  • Which differences can be found between the strategies used by students classified as weak, as average and those classified as excellent when asked to take a historical perspective?
  • Seven teachers each selected a weak, an average and an excellent student (n = 21)
  • HTP assignment (developed and validated by Hartmann and Hasselhorn, 2008)
  • The mean category scores (pop, roa and cont) were calculated for each of the students
  • The data protocols were analyzed by using the coding software programmeMultiple Episode Protocol Analysis (Erkens, 2003)
  • The coding categories were formulated
results 2
Results (2)
  • Students used:
  • Chronological historical knowledge (including thinking about continuity and change); social-economic historical knowledge; and social-political historical knowledge
  • Historical empathy  students made personal connections with the historical agent
  • Excellent classified students (as compared to weak classified students):
  • Used specification of ignorance
  • Asked more questions about the source
  • Made more references to the source
  • Combined chronological knowledge with social-economic and social politicalknowledge


  • Small number of participants (explorative)
  • Subjective classification

Practical implications:

  • Combining different frames of references
  • Specifyingtheir lack of knowledge

Further research:

  • Students who did not display a lot of chronological and social knowledge, tried to take a historical perspective by making personal connections with the historical agent in order to understand the historical agent’s decisions
  • The relation between generic task strategies and domain-specific strategies
contact or full paper
Contact or full paper?