Engaging in disciplinary thinking: historical literacy practices in Finnish general upper secondary schools

Marko van den Berg, Najat Ouakrim-Soivio and Jukka Rantala

While the educational policy-level documents and practices include the disciplinary practices of history and critical thinking, it is not explicitly taught in Finnish schools. Content area teachers (e.g., in history) have not been trained to be literacy teachers and mother tongue teachers are unfamiliar with disciplinary literacy practices. Moreover, these practices are best learned within each discipline, as they require understanding of both disciplinary content and knowledge production practices. Along with the new curricula, content area teachers need to engage in professional development for the improvement of their competencies in disciplinary literacy teaching and assessment of students’ literacy skills. To develop teacher education, as well as to support teachers’ professional development and the curriculum implementation, research about literacy and texts in history is needed. Our study aims to advance learning, teaching and assessing the disciplinary literacy of history in Finnish schools. Our study gives special emphasis to students with an immigrant background.

Marika Manninen and Amna Khawaja

See publications here.

Published monograph (in Finnish): Rantala, J., Puustinen, M., Khawaja, A., van den Berg, M. & Ouakrim-Soivio, N. 2020. Näinkö historiaa opitaan? Helsinki: Gaudeamus.

See the research consortium’s web pages here.