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Towards an assessment of the value of archaeological education for primary school pupils

Archaeological education is under researched and poorly understood and despite drawing upon the richly theorised fields of archaeology and education, archaeological education is also under theorised. Therefore, I have sought to add to the limited knowledge about archaeological education by exploring the theoretical basis for archaeological education. I have identified the range of relevant educational and archaeological theories and used this information to develop a framework for analysing the theoretical basis for archaeological education. I used this framework to deconstruct the theoretical basis of a selection of archaeological education programmes. I was interested in how the theoretical basis for archaeological education might relate to its value for pupils. Therefore, I explored how a selection of archaeological education programmes might have value for pupils in terms of enjoyment, educational value and empowerment. I analysed how these values relate to the theoretical basis of those programmes. These ideas were chiefly investigated through the non-participant observation, written assessments and analysis of the experiences of pupils from 12 different schools engaging with the archaeological education programmes of five different organisations. This research revealed that archaeological education can be deconstructed against a range of different theories, and is variable, but tends to be educationally progressive. The 4 relationship between archaeological education and value for pupils is complex, but pupils generally seem to enjoy engaging with archaeological education and there does seem to be a suggestion of a link to empowerment, particularly when pupils are given opportunities to explore freely. However, there is an unrealised potential for archaeological education and thus I hope that this study will encourage others to explore these ideas further and will provoke archaeologists and archaeological education specialists to examine the theoretical influences of archaeological education more closely.

Identiferoai:union.ndltd.org:bl.uk/oai:ethos.bl.uk:626691
Date January 2014
CreatorsCole, T. J.
PublisherUniversity College London (University of London)
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation
Sourcehttp://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/1417412/

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