Conceptions of Geography Teaching and Learning: A Qualitative Study with Nine Hong Kong Geography Teachers




Chan, Eva
Kwan, Tammy

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The Grosvenor Center for Geographic Education


This paper reports on a qualitative study which reveals the conceptions of geography teaching and learning held by nine secondary geography teachers. They are now currently undergoing the curriculum change process of the educational reform of Hong Kong. Six aspects are used as the framework to identify the conceptions through an array of literature review: Aims and Expected Outcomes of Teaching and Learning, Content of Teaching and Learning, Styles and Approaches of Teaching, Roles of Teachers, Roles of Students, and the Context. Based on three sources of data including the written discourse, semi-structured interview, and the critical comment on a teaching scenario, five conceptions emerged, namely: Transmission of Geography Knowledge, Preparation for Examination, Development of Intellect, Cultivation of Values and Attitudes, and Fostering Interactions Between Teachers and Students. No single teacher possesses just one conception but often several of them are at work to affect their actual classroom practice. Teachers who possess more of the first two conceptions reveal a shaping orientation which is reactive to the Education Reform while those who hold the other three conceptions have a nurturing or social orientation that appear to be proactive in nature to the Education Reform.



geography, geography teaching, geography learning, conceptions


Chan, E. & Kwan, T. (2008). Conceptions of geography teaching and learning: A qualitative study with nine Hong Kong geography teachers. Research in Geographic Education, 10(2), pp. 41-65.


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