+1 Recommend
1 collections
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      What is the purpose of studying history? Developing students’ perspectives on the purposes and value of history education

      Read this article at

          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.


          This paper reports on an intervention study conducted with the A level students whom I teach at a sixth form college in the north-west of England. The study aimed to survey the students’ perceptions of the purposes of history education, and to broaden their understanding of the debate. The study drew upon data from 82 online forum posts from 41 history A level students. It consisted of two stages: the first surveyed students’ initial perceptions of the purposes of history education; the second aimed to further develop students’ perceptions through the deployment of stimulus material and activities designed to broaden students’ understanding of the issue. Following these activities, students’ perceptions were surveyed for a second time to facilitate comparison. The study data indicate that students who have chosen to pursue their historical studies to a higher level tend to appreciate the intrinsic value of knowing history (as opposed to its extrinsic value, such as developing transferable skills or for the sake of employability). The study also indicates that students’ perceptions of the purpose and value of historical study can be significantly altered by teacher intervention, although the long-term impact remains unassessed.

          Related collections

          Most cited references 37

          • Record: found
          • Abstract: not found
          • Book: not found

          The big six historical thinking concepts

            • Record: found
            • Abstract: not found
            • Book: not found

            Imagined communities: Reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism

              • Record: found
              • Abstract: not found
              • Article: not found

              Elicitation Techniques: Getting People to Talk About Ideas They Don’t Usually Talk About


                Author and article information

                History Education Research Journal
                UCL Press (UK )
                20 April 2021
                : 18
                : 1
                : 89-108
                UCL Institute of Education, UK
                Author notes
                Corresponding author: Email: danielnuttall1981@ 123456gmail.com
                Copyright © 2021 Nuttall

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 2, Tables: 7, References: 43, Pages: 21


                Comment on this article

                History Education Research Journal
                Volume 18, Issue 1

                Similar content 141

                Most referenced authors 78