How Comprehensible is History? Progression in the way Swedish Students Explain Human Action in History.

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This project is a substudy in my PhD Theses: How Comprehensible is History? Progressions in the Way Students Explain human Action in History. The aim of the study is to investigate if there is a progression in the ways students explain human action in history. The results show a progression (increased complexity) in students’ written explanations. There is a progression in respect to what kind of driving forces students use from the solely use of internal factors, such as the actor's intention/s, via the use of the social role of the agent as an explanatory factor to the tendency of also referring to external factors. Progression was also found in the number of reasons mentioned and the structure of these reasons/causes. To capture variations among and between grades the head categories were nuanced. Yet another category to capture students progression were modeled, called "qualitative complexity", investigating progression in the structure of the students’ answers regarding reasons and arguments. The results if this study corresponds with results of British students responding to a similar task (Lee et al 1997; Lee et al 2001; Lee 2005) I will discuss in what aspects the visible progression in students’ written responses is due to an effect of their factual knowledge, conceptual knowledge, comprehension and familiarity of the school subject history (meta-knowledge) and/or other kinds of cognitive development such as improved language skills and degree of perspective taking.

Last updated on 2017-22-03 at 07:15