Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

The Problem of Time

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Who this event is for

  • Staff - teaching
  • Staff - research
  • Current students - postgraduate research
  • Academic community


The Glasgow Room, Harcourt Hill Campus


Time is arguably one of the most challenging concepts we face in our everyday lives, and certainly one of the greatest challenges in terms of formal education. Time is central to so many subject domains including science, mathematics, English grammar and the humanity subjects. There are particular challenges related to the language we use to describe longer periods of time, and these have ostensibly been amplified in the new primary curriculum with its emphasis on geographical processes and the formal teaching of chronology.

The approach taken in this seminar will be to consider some of the broader definitions of the nature of time, including the forces that create and shape a dynamic universe. A brief explanation of the units we use to measure time, and the challenges they create, will also be considered; however, the main focus will be on the reasonably extensive research into children’s understanding of time, with a particular reference to the humanity subjects, allied to research into effective models of teaching and learning including narrative approaches.