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Helping Muslim boys succeed: the case for history education

Wilkinson, Matthew L. N. 2014. Helping Muslim boys succeed: the case for history education. Curriculum Journal 25 (3) , pp. 396-431. 10.1080/09585176.2014.929527

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Recent research suggests that Muslim boys have become the ‘New Folk Devils’ of British education, who are characterised by resistance to formal education, especially at secondary level, and under-achievement. Since the 1990s, British Muslim boys would appear to have become increasingly alienated from compulsory schooling, especially in the humanities subjects which lack obvious instrumental value. This mixed-methods study of the performance of 295 secondary school British Muslim boys in their compulsory school history provides evidence which interrupts this narrative of the academic under-achievement and educational dis-engagement of Muslim boys, especially in the humanities subjects. When viewed through the prism of a laminated, non-reductive model of educational success, this indicative sample of British Muslim boys could be considered to have had significant success at a traditional humanities subject such as history intellectually, spiritually, emotionally, instrumentally and civically. This paper therefore proposes that history can provide a vital meaning-making tool to generate the success of Muslim boys in a variety of significant dimensions both in and out of school. It suggests how history can be more fully and effectively harnessed by teachers, parents and policy-planners to encourage internal integration and external social engagement in British Muslim pupils.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Publisher: British Curriculum Foundation
ISSN: 0958-5176
Funders: Curriculum for Cohesion
Last Modified: 07 Apr 2022 11:00

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