Date of Award

8-2015

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Education

Major Professor

Thomas N. Turner

Committee Members

Dorothy Hendricks, Deborah Wooten, Pamela Angelle

Abstract

This quasi-experimental, mixed-methods case study examined the effects of perspective taking on the discussion skills of one group of 9th grade World History students. Specifically, this study investigated the impacts of a historical perspective taking scenario activity on student participation in discussions, quality of discussions, student learning from discussions, teacher perceptions of discussions, and student and teacher enjoyment of discussions. The methods used to assess these impacts were classroom observations, frequency counts, teacher interviews, a student focus group interview, and document analysis.

Results indicated that the use of a historical perspective taking scenario activity produced a dramatic increase in student participation in classroom discussions. Quality of student responses increased in scenario-based discussions, though not to a statistically significant degree. Students reported increased learning and enjoyment in scenario-based discussions. Additionally, the teacher’s perceptions of classroom discussions changed in numerous ways after participating in discussions that used a historical perspective taking scenario activity.

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