Biggest conference on history

11th May 2012 at 01:00
Luminaries in the subject are getting set for a trailblazing forum to exchange ideas. Henry Hepburn reports

The Scottish Association of History Teachers runs the biggest event in its history, 18-20 May, linking up with experts from England, Wales and Ireland.

"One of the big aims of the conference is that we all learn lessons from each other," says president Neil McLennan.

The event will build upon the "huge success" of the association's "Learning from each other" conference held in Edinburgh in November, he explains.

"From that event, we managed to pull together primary teachers, secondary teachers, heritage education providers and college and university lecturers," he says.

"The buzz in the lecture theatres and break-out rooms was electric. There are a lot of magnificent examples of good practice out there, and the sharing of that amongst practitioners was wonderful. We now aim to go a stage further."

Mr McLennan has long been impressed with how seriously teachers in England take action research, so this will be the focus during the Saturday session of the conference in Aberdeen. "There is a lot to learn by taking yourself out of the comfort zone to look elsewhere," he says.

Saturday's keynote speaker will be Ewen Cameron, professor of Scottish history at the University of Edinburgh, with his presentation "The Global Turn of Scottish History".

The launch of new history qualifications will be a main attraction on the Sunday, while Dauvit Broun, professor of medieval Scottish history at the University of Glasgow, will deliver a talk entitled "The Breaking of Britain".

"I hope teachers will travel to the Granite City for a wonderful weekend of CPD, assessment, guidance on new qualifications, input from inspectors across Britain looking at best practice, moderation examples, a TeachMeet and some excellent academic inputs," said Mr McLennan.

"What more can you ask for at this time of massive change in education?"

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