Objectives and stages

Although several studies show that the development of the understanding of historical time is a learning process, hardly any research has been done into how this learning process works, which stages we can distinguish in this learning process, and how these stages can be measured. If we want to improve pupils’ understanding of historical time in primary school, it is important to gain more insight into these questions.

Based on literature and descriptions in history curricula in England and the Netherlands, De Groot, Ros, Van Boxtel and Oort (2014) have developed a model with five objectives and three stages for the understanding of historical time for pupils in primary school. The objectives are described in increasing difficulty and abstraction.

  • Stage A: Emergent understanding of historical time
  • Stage B: Initial understanding of historical time
  • Stage C: Continued understanding of historical time

Click in the upper-right corner of the diagram below for an enlarged version in a new tab

3 thoughts on “Objectives and stages

  1. Peter Smulders

    Ziet er heel duidelijk en gestructureerd uit. Het begrip historisch tijdsbesef is nu eenduidig gedefinieerd en begrijpelijk uitgelegd, ook voor niet historici.
    Ik ben nieuwsgierig naar de verdere uitbouw van de website.


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