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Walker, Dana

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The purpose of this multi-case phenomenological study is to understand the unique experiences of secondary social studies teachers. The number of participants was bound to six secondary social studies teachers from a public school district in a mid-Atlantic state and the experience of the researcher. Data was gathered through in-depth interviews using Seidman’s (2006) Three Step Interview Series and individual profiles were written. The phenomenological data analysis was guided by several methods including Hycner (1985), Moustakas (1994), and Seidman (2006). From the participants’ experiences several themes emerged: similarities in personal learning habits, a dislike for mandatory assessments and curriculum, and a sense of an inequitable status among teachers of core disciplines. Additionally, the data was analyzed utilizing Fallace’s (2017) model of three social studies orientations—traditional, disciplinary, and progressive. Taken as a whole, the participants aligned to both traditional and disciplinary orientations, but many described themselves as leaning toward a progressive orientation of teaching social studies. Findings indicate a need for future research of implications when instruction, curriculum, and assessment are not aligned to a sole orientation or purpose of social studies.


211 pages

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