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Thinking Historically for Canada's Future

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • SSHRC Awarded PG2 2019: When history education in Canada was first designed at the end of the 19th century, it was part of a nation-building project shaped by competing interests of Anglophone Canada and Francophone Québec. Indigenous peoples and their histories were completely omitted, marginalized, or expressed through settler perspectives. In contemporary Canada, characterized by ethnocultural diversity and efforts to usher in an era of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, the nation-building purpose of history education no longer holds. The political, social, and cultural complexities we face demand a critical grounding in the past and make history education indispensable. The key question motivating this project is, What approaches to teaching and learning history contribute to the development of critically and historically minded, engaged citizens? The overall goals and objectives of the proposed partnership are to nurture a community of interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral inquiry among academic historians, researchers based in faculties of education, Indigenous scholars, graduate students, educators in museums, archives, and historic sites, and practicing teachers to (1) map the terrain of history education in K--12; (2) ascertain to what extent history and social studies teaching helps students engage with the key issues or problems facing Canadian society today; (3) identify and develop evidenced-based practices in history teaching, learning, assessment, and resource development, and evaluate their efficacy in providing powerful and engaging learning experiences for students, particularly in terms of building trans systemic understanding across knowledge systems; (4) with pre and in-service teachers, cultivate communities of practice that are grounded in theoretical and empirical research on history education pedagogy to promote engaged and critical historical thinking; and (5) using findings that emerge from the research, make evidence-based policy recommendations for history curriculum, pedagogy, and assessment through proactive connections with ministries of education, faculties of education, museum educators, Indigenous organizations and stakeholders, publishers, other curriculum developers, and practicing teachers.

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    Research Material
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    © Peck, Carla. All rights reserved other than by permission. This document embargoed to those without UAlberta CCID until 2028.