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Rogers, P. “History: The Past As a Frame of Reference.” In The History Curriculum for Teachers, edited by C. Portal, 3-21. London, UK: Falmer Press, 1987.


In this chapter Rogers presents a case for making history a compulsory subject occupying approximately two-thirds of school time for every student. The author presents “capital benefit” as the primary reason for introducing history as required course. Generally, capital benefit is defined as a “frame of reference” that informs how we understand the present thus history education should be compulsory in schools because it can help students understand their lives today. This frame of reference is constructed in terms of two key aspects of historical knowledge, its explanatory nature and its use of analysis. Specifically, analysis is a useful tool for students to learn how to use because, as Rogers maintains, people need to know how to interpret the past rather than merely approach history learning as a collection of facts and information.

Ana Laura Pauchulo