Employment, employability and history

Article

Geoff Baker, last updated: 4th October 2013

Employment, employability and history: helping students to see the connection

Five years ago, in Teaching History 132, Harris and Haydn drew attention to the fact that while the vast majority of Key Stage 3 students claimed to enjoy history and even to regard it as a useful subject, relatively few of them were able to explain why they thought it was so important. Geoff Baker set out to address this issue, in relation to just one of the many reasons that could be advanced for the study of history - its acknowledged contribution to developing ways of thinking and working that are prized by employers.

Since ignorance of its value can have a negative impact on students' GCSE choices, Baker embarked on a yearlong project with a mixed-ability Year 8 class, exploring a variety of ways of sharpening students' awareness of the range of skills that they were developing as they studied the subject. The insights that he shares owe much to his detailed examination of several alternative approaches and his careful consideration of how to engage students in reflecting on and applying their experiences in history to the demands of the workplace...

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