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McDiarmid, G. Williamson and Peter Vinten-Johansen. "A Catwalk across the Great Divide: Redesigning the History Teaching Methods Course." In Knowing, Teaching, and Learning History: National and International Perspectives, edited by Peter N. Stearns, Peter Seixas and Sam Wineburg, 156-77. New York: New York University Press, 2000.


McDiarmid and Vinten-Johansen discuss their attempt to bridge a key, yet challenging, factor for teaching history structured around historical thinking: the collaboration between historians and history educators.  They begin by outlining how the university does not privilege collaborations between history departments and faculties of education, but these collaborations are central for beginning teachers who are learning to teach history.  Over a two year period, the authors attempted to make historical inquiry a more central focus in the ‘Introducing History’ seminar at the College of Education at Michigan State University.  Their first attempt, although successful for passing on the tools of inquiry, left many of the teacher candidates feeling practically unprepared for the challenges of classroom teaching.  Their second attempt focused on Curriculum Unit Development in which teacher candidates planned full units that integrated historical inquiry into the curriculum.  They found that the Curriculum Unit Development model left the beginning teachers with practical strategies for long-term planning based on the integration of inquiry and content in their history classes.

Samantha Cutrara