The nature of Historical Facts: History teachers’ conception of it

Charles Adabo Oppong, Kofi Poku Quan-Baffour


The study focused on how History teachers conceived historical facts. With this, data illumination was done qualitatively. In all, a sample of 4 History teachers was used in the study. Thematic analysis was used for the analysis of the data. There were varying views on the developmental nature of historical facts. With this, the responses were related to two schools of thought, namely, the unique pattern of historical facts which undermines the developmental nature of History and the other aspect which talks about the element of development in History. On integration, it is astonishing that some teachers were ignorant of the integrated character of History while others acknowledged that the nature of History is such that it integrates with other social science subjects, notably, Geography, Economics, and Sociology. Regarding the element of subjectivity, responses were situated in the Positivist and Relativist philosophies. Those who identified themselves with the Positivists acknowledged Historical objectivity and yielded to no such thing as History being unobjective. The Relativists, on the other hand, intimated that History is subjective, no less no more. Finally, teachers in the study noted that there are no underlining theories or laws in History. Indeed, they all shared a view of the traditional Historians who do not accept and submit to theories and laws in historical explanations.

Keywords: Historical facts, History teachers, Nature.

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