Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Using Learning Stories in Secondary Social Studies: Gathering, Analysing and Using Evidence to Support Learners' Conceptual Understandings.

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posted on 2021-11-12, 15:10 authored by Picken, Amanda Josephine

This research examined the use of learning stories as a way to gather, analyse and use evidence to support the development of social studies conceptual understandings. This is important because there is limited research in New Zealand related to social studies assessment in secondary school environments, or in the monitoring of conceptual changes in understanding. The limited research that can be drawn upon highlights the challenges social studies teachers face teaching and assessing conceptually.  Sociocultural theory featured strongly throughout the research, through the decision to investigate learning stories as an assessment approach, as well as the lens with which to approach the methodology. In order to investigate the Learning Story Framework, as an intervention, a qualitative design-based methodology was utilised involving one in-depth case study. The research composed of three iterative phases, gathering evidence using semi-structured interviews, participant observation and documentation analysis, including reflective journals.  The findings suggested that learning stories can be used to support the development of conceptual understandings in conjunction with a reflective class culture, strong community relationships, clarity of planning for and sharing conceptual understandings, and support for students to critically reflect.


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Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

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Author Retains Copyright

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Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Education

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Education Policy and Implementation


Milligan, Andrea; Anderson, Dayle