The new national history curriculum: we can't change history...can we?

Salter, Peta (2010) The new national history curriculum: we can't change history...can we? In: Proceedings of Australian Teacher Education Association Conference. pp. 1-11. From: ATEA 2010 Australian Teacher Education Association Conference, 4-7 July 2010, Townsville, QLD, Australia.

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The revision of history is not a new phenomenon. Indeed, there are strong arguments for revisiting interpretations of the past that may be subject to change in response to new evidence or perspectives. The revision of history has often been linked to nationalism and ideas of historical and cultural identity. Similarly, the new national history curriculum, especially in regards to two of its key cross-curriculum dimensions: 'Indigenous1 perspectives' and 'Asia and Australia's engagement with Asia2', draws a strong parallel with the transformation of the Australian national identity from 'monoculture to 'multi-culture'. This paper critically explores the sustainability of the curriculum in light of the knowledge needed to teach it. The inclusion of Indigenous Perspectives and Asia literacy has made the two key areas seemingly strange bedfellows. The two share similar concerns regarding the problematising of cultural politics, challenging Eurocentric curriculum and the complexities of cross-cultural understanding, yet compete for space as discrete bodies of knowledge. Furthermore, the sustainability of both Asia literacy (NALSAS, 2001) and Indigenous perspectives initiatives are questioned due to slow progress and outcomes plateaus (Gray, 2008).

There are also substantial absences in dialogue regarding critical evaluation of how the 'new history' will be catered for in teacher education. This paper discusses the construction of knowledge in the national history curriculum and challenges for teacher-education programs to prepare graduates to realise curriculum requirements.

Item ID: 16986
Item Type: Conference Item (Research - E1)
ISBN: 978-0-9752324-5-3
Keywords: Asia, Indigenous, curriculum
Date Deposited: 10 May 2011 13:15
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130205 Humanities and Social Sciences Curriculum and Pedagogy (excl Economics, Business and Management) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9303 Curriculum > 930302 Syllabus and Curriculum Development @ 100%
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