The Impact of Authentic Pedagogy on Student Learning in Tenth Grade History Courses
Type of Degreedissertation
DepartmentCurriculum and Teaching
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This mixed-methods study examined the impact of varying levels of authentic pedagogy on student learning in 9th and 10th grade history classrooms. The sample included four junior high teachers and four high school teachers. During the initial phase of the study, instructional artifacts (tasks) and classroom observational data were collected and analyzed to determine the level of authentic pedagogy students experienced in their classes. Participating teachers were assigned an authentic pedagogy score based on this analysis which was used as the primary independent variable in subsequent statistical analyses designed to evaluate student learning outcomes. The findings suggest that authentic pedagogy has a small, but positive impact on student performance on the Alabama High School Graduation Exam. Classroom level comparisons suggest that students who receive higher levels of authentic pedagogy were not put at a significant disadvantage on a test of lower order knowledge. The study also evaluated the impact of authentic pedagogy on higher order learning outcomes and various subgroups of students (i.e. race, gender, etc.). Due to the small sample of teachers, results should be viewed as extremely tentative and limited to the setting where the study was conducted.