Teachers’ pedagogical content knowledge of two specific historical contexts captured and compared

H. Tuithof*, J. Van Drie, L. Bronkhorst, J. Van Tartwijk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


PCK is seen as the transformation of content knowledge and pedagogical knowledge into a different type of knowledge that is used to develop and carry out teaching strategies. To gain more insight into the extent to which PCK is content specific, the PCK about more topics or concepts should be compared. However, researchers have rarely compared teachers’ concrete PCK about more than one topic. To examine the content dependency of PCK, we captured the PCK of sixteen experienced Dutch history teachers about two historical contexts (i.e. topics) using interviews and Content Representation questionnaires. Analysis reveals that all history teachers’ PCK about the two contexts overlaps, although the degree of overlap differs. Teachers with relatively more overlap are driven by their overarching subject related goals and less by the historical context they teach. We discuss the significance of these outcomes for the role of teaching orientation as a part of PCK.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)686-711
Number of pages26
JournalEducational Studies
Issue number4
Early online date14 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • history teaching
  • Pedagogical Content Knowledge
  • teaching orientation


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