Improving Geography Education Research Across the Different Elements of Geography




Heffron, Susan
Brenner, Jacob C.
Crocco, Margaret
McClure, Caroline
Rutherford, David J.
Scholz, Michael
Somdahl-Sands, Katrinka
Sparks, Kelly

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


The Grosvenor Center for Geographic Education


This paper reflects a collective discussion of a recommendation by the Geography Education Research Committee of the Road Map for 21st Century Geography Education Project (Road Map Project). The group of scholars examined Key Research Question 2, "How do geographic knowledge, skills, and practices develop across the different elements of geography?" and "Recommendation 2: The Committee recommends research that examines the components and characteristics of exemplary geography curricula" from the committee report. Analysis of the six Essential Elements identified in Geography for Life: National Geography Standards, Second Edition (Heffron & Downs, 2012) and their role in helping to organize and connect to research being conducted in related fields is explored in the paper. Examples of effective research and opportunities for future research are discussed.



geography, A Road Map for 21st Century Geography Education, Geography Education Research Committee, essential elements of geography, development of geography knowledge, skills, practices, geography education research


Heffron, S., Brenner, Jacob C., Crocco, M., McClure, C., Rutherford, D.J., Scholz, M., Somdahl-Sands, K., & Sparks, K. (2013). Improving geography education research across the different elements of geography. Research in Geographic Education, 15(2), pp. 16-28.


Rights Holder

Rights License

Rights URI