Geography matters: Teacher beliefs about geography in today's schools

Elizabeth R. Hinde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This article describes findings from a survey of 173 preschool through 12th grade teachers in which they express their thoughts about what children should learn about geography. Results indicate that despite geography's lack of attention in the curriculum, teachers are unhappy with the state of geography in schools. Their reflections reveal a strong sense of need, even urgency, for students to learn geography. Four trends were identified in their thoughts about geography education: expanding horizons paradigm of curriculum; connections that geography allows for in the curriculum; maps, continents, countries, and states; and Americans' appalling lack of geographic knowledge. Framing their thoughts in the context of the current state of geography, the article also describes the importance of geography in creating effective citizens, the ambiguity of the discipline itself, its unique role in the curriculum, and insights about integrating geography across the curriculum. The article concludes with hope for reviving geography in schools.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-62
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Social Studies Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Beliefs
  • Curriculum integration
  • Geography
  • K-12 curriculum
  • Spatial perspective
  • Teachers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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