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Conference Submissions, Areas, Themes and Topics

Viewing conference submissions:

Click here to view the HEIRNET 2020 Amsterdam Conference Submissions which will be updated monthly.

Sessions, Strands and Presentations

The conference is organised in 90 minute sessions, each with up to four parallel strands. This means all delegates can make a conference presentation.


There are nine types:

1 Papers 2 Debates 3 Discussions & Open Meetings
4 Book Presentations 5 Project Presentations 6 Round Tables
7 Seminars 8 Symposia 9 Workshops

Additionally, Delegate Created sessions might be organised differently.

The programme includes time in each session for questions, discussion and debate

Also, we allow ample social time before, between and after sessions, including refreshment and meal breaks

Delegate created and run sessions and workshops

Delegates can create, organise and manage sessions on topics of their own choice and workshops. These presentations can be for 45 or 90 minute


  • Paper Sessions
    Allow up to 20 minutes per presentation with three or four presentations in a session.
    Speakers and the session chair organize each session as they think fit to allow time for questions, discussion, reflection and debate.
  • Workshops and delegate created presentations
    Last 45 or 90 minutes according to the wishes of the presenters. They present, organise and manage them as they wish.
  • Other Sessions: Debates, Discussions & Open Meetings: Round Tables: Seminar: Symposia: Book & Project Presentations: Round tables: Seminar: Symposia
    Session organisers  decide upon how they want to run their sessions, including timing of presentations.

Conference Submissions: proposals with abstract

  • The conference programme is based upon submitted abstracts. So, please submit an abstract as indicated below with your submission.
  • We will respond to submissions and their abstracts within two weeks of receipt, either acceptance or rejection.
  • On acceptance of your submission for a presentation at the conference you can register immediately by clicking on the Register Now link below.
Register Now

Conference abstract submissions should include the following:

  1. Full name
  2. Affiliation
  3. Postal address, State/Province/County/Country
  4. Email Address
  5. Co Presenters
  6. Conference Theme and Topic
  7. Type of session: paper/round table/seminar/debate/discussion/workshop or delegate
  8. Title of proposed presentation
  9. Keywords: up to ten key words
  10. Abstract of between 200 and 300 words Please include:
  • The main points in the argument
  • The geographical location of the research
  • Brief outline of the research methodology
  • Brief summary of the presentation’s evidential basis
  • Conclusion
  • References: up to three references

Please see below for information about conference Areas, Theme’s and Topics – 6 Areas, 22 Themes and over 200 Topics.

If you have any queries please contact the conference organisers at heirnet@gmail.com.

To make a Submission with it’s abstract for the conference, click on the Submit Submission link below to complete and send your submission.

Submit Submission


The conference’s 22 themes and their 200+ topics are grouped in 6 AREAS A-F to reflect HEIRNET’s aims that include those listed in the conference flyer, plus additional topics such as on Assessment and Awarding Bodies.


1. Public History and History Education

a) Public history and the political use of the past
b) Imperial legacies and cultural colonialism, see themes 6, 12, 13, 18
c) Facing the Guilty Past: Truth and Reconciliation
d) Controlling public memory: censorship, control and amnesia
e) History Education and National Identity
f) Public History and Identity: nationalism, populism and a sense of belonging
g) History in the Environment – exploring the environment, its heritage and memory sites, see also Area B: sun-section 7d
h) Memory Sites: e.g. monuments, memorials, statuary, displays, plaques, place names – street and site furniture – and museums for the exploration and illumination of local, national and global history
i) Ceremony, Ritual, the Invented Past – triumphalism and identity, including national history curricula:
j) Political discourse and history education

2. History Education Outside and Beyond Formal Education

a) Public History and the public sphere
b) History from below: vernacular history: feminist: disfranchised: discriminated against: the invisible
c) Public History and Identity, see Area B

3. Mass Media & Public History – History and Entertainment

a) Developing historical understanding through engaging with mass media representations of history [e.g. print: film: TV: radio: audio: internet – podcasts, websites etc., virtual reality] b) Art, Drama, Journalism, Literature and Music
c) Association, Institutions and Organisations
d) Formal, informal, social and cultural learning
e) Performance and History: representations of  history


4. Historical Culture and History Education

a) Cultural capital – its nature, role and impact [Bourdieu] b) Street furniture: art, architecture, monuments, sculpture in the everyday environment
c) A sense of identity and History Education’s civic, communal, regional, nationalistic and patriotic roles
d) Historical culture and History Education
e) History, culture and social class

5. The Digital Age: The Internet, World Wide Web and Powerful Tools for Learning

a) The Internet and thinking historically: The World Wide Web and powerful tools for History Education

  • Teaching and learning
  • Pupils as historians and thinking historically from theory into practice
  • The Internet and historical sources, resources and data:
  • Researching the past via the Internet
  • Communities of practice – webs and networks
  • Social Media, Interactivity [i.e. conferences, symposia, tutoring, virtual reality, Facebook, twitter, smart phones – texting /
  • Digital technology in the classroom – iPhones, tablets, laptops, electronic blackboards
  • Virtual reality, modelling and historical representation and interpretation

b) BIG BROTHER: The Orwellian Nightmare – the threat of 5th Generation computing in the digital age

6. Historical Consciousness – see themes: 12, 13, 18

a) Historical consciousness – its nature, significance and cultural roots
b) Factors affecting historical consciousness and citizenship: cultural, economic, ethnic, familial, geographical, ideological, political, social and tribal factors
c) The cultural and oral past: chronicles, fairy tales, legends, myths, narratives, poems, songs, stories and their History Educational significance
d) Historical Education & Consciousness: Diversity: Ethnicity, Gender, Orientation
e) Historical Consciousness and Identity: Populism, Patriotism, Nationalism and Xenophobia
f) Teaching the sensitive, controversial and emotive past: ethnicity, slavery, genocide, discrimination, colonialism & imperialism,liberation struggles, persecution, terrorist or freedom fighter?
g) The corporate dimension: from the East India Company to Exxon & Amazon
Issues of identity in the Age of Corporate Imperialism, Internationalism [e.g. EU, NATO, World Bank]. Nationalism, Populism, Regionalism and Globalisation

7. Identity and History Around Us: Family, Community, Heritage and The Environment

a) Aspects of Identity

  • Personal, Family history, memory and identity
  • Clan, tribe, nationality, ethnicity and identity
  • Faith, religion and ideology
  • Local and communal history

b) Nationalism, populism and a sense of belonging

c) Students’ prior historical knowledge: social conversation and the history classroom, individual and collective memory, consciousness and understanding and the taught curriculum – school and classroom museums, monuments, plaques, displays, memorials, art galleries, churches

  • Local, school and communal history
  • Oral history and historical learning
  • Regional history
  • Heritage

d) exploring the environment, its heritage and memory sites, e.g

  • archaeological sites
  • art galleries,
  • museums,
  • palaces
  • parks
  • place names
  • religious buildings
  • state buildings,
  • theme parks

e) commemorative, communal history transmitted through:

  • advertising
  • anniversaries
  • broadcasts
  • celebrations
  • cenotaphs
  • ceremonies
  • commemorations
  • displays exhibitions
  • games and gaming
  • memorials
  • memorial services
  • message boards
  • monuments
  • news programmes
  • personal and family names
  • plaques
  • radio
  • religious services
  • the Internet
  • TV

8. Ethnicity, Identity and Global Perspectives

a) Globalisation and the Extinction Agenda: Past and Present
b) Multi-faith, multi-ethnic and culturally diverse societies
c) Values, beliefs, human rights and social justice
d) History and gender
e) History Education and Ethnicity
f) History Education and Diversity
– a question of personal, familial and communal identities?
g) Fundamentalism, nationalism, patriotism, regionalism, internationalism & liberal education
h) History Education in post-colonial societies
i) History Education and supra-nationalism: multi-national corporations and agencies e.g. FANG Facebook: Amazon: Netflix: Google
j) International networking and cooperation: national and international agencies and organisations, e.g.UK government, the EU, the UN, Oxfam and Global Witness and other organisations
k) TIMMS, PISA and their impact upon History Education
l) Populism in the age of Putin, Trump and its threat to Liberalism and Liberal Democracy


9. Critical Disciplinary Thinking in History – Thinking Historically [1]

a) Ethos and Orientation The mentalité of the history teacher – individually and collectively
b) Thinking Historically– grounded in history’s academic disciplinary structure, substantive [propositional] and syntactic [procedural] conceptual networks, forms of knowledge and protocols for investigating historical topics, resolving historical enquiries and constructing interpretations and accounts of the past
c) Academic historians and disciplinary thinking:  the historian’s craft, e.g. Peter Geyl, Sir Lewis Namier, E.P. Thompson, the Annales School, Jack Hexter, Eric Hobsbawm, David Cannadine, Ruth Schurr, Margaret MacMillan, drawing on the discourse of academic historians for understanding disciplinary thinking
d) History educationalists, psychologists and disciplinary thinking: John Fines, David Sylvester, Alan Blyth, Hilary Cooper, Stephan Lévesque, Jorn Rusen, Sam Wineburg, Peter Lee, Denis Shemilt
e) International perspectives on critical disciplinary thinking in history
f) ‘Doing History’ pupils and students as proto-historians: investigating the past and constructing syntactically based historical understanding
g) Professional Knowledge: Teacher professionalism including Professional Content Knowledge, Shulman’s PCK.
h) Cognitive Apprenticeship, Reflective Practice and Communities of Practice Powerful conceptualisations of professional development
i) Constructivism – A view of historians’ view of History as a discipline from Thucydides to the modern day

10. Thinking Historically [2] – ‘Cognitive & Psychological Perspectives: Affective, Cognitive, Empathetic, Imaginative and Creative

a) History Education’s role in creating mind-sets that focus upon, value, support participatory citizenship, liberal democracy, multi-culturalism and associated human rights education
b. Counter factuals, simulation and drama and the development of historical knowledge and understanding
c) Empathetic understanding– affective, effective, sympathetic, emotive
d) The informed imagination – inference, association, insight, fanciful, creative: making connections
e) Creativity connectivity: neural networks et
f) Developmental psychology: From Piaget and Vygotsky to Neural Science, i.e. what does thinking historically mean from the development psychological perspective
g) Social learning: peer interaction, cognitive apprenticeship and the social learning paradigm – Vygotsky et. al
h) Situated cognition
i) Competence Orientation (historical thinking) in History Didactics
j) Conceptual understanding Pupil and student understanding of substantive [propositional – substantive – first order] and syntactic [procedural – syntactic – second order] disciplinary concepts and their role in thinking historically
k) The tyranny of second order concepts? The missing link – the framework of substantive conceptual, factual concepts that give structure and purpose to historical knowledge based upon syntactic conceptual and procedural knowledge.

11. The History of History Education

a) Past and present schools of history: discussion, debates and controversies: historiographical perspectives
b) The political dimension – The Right Kind of History with cultural, ethnic, faith and ethical connotations
c) Philosophical origins and roots seminal movements and initiatives developments and key ideas
d) National curricula – their nature and political role/function
e) Educational reform and history education
f) History textbooks, their nature, role and function;
g) Innovative resources for teaching history
h) Pedagogical innovation, initiatives and approaches to teaching history
i) Research and development projects
j) Testing, assessment and public examinations
k) Key figures and their contribution
l) Cross-curricularity, Humanities and Social Studies
m) A sense of identity and History Education’s civic, communal, nationalistic and patriotic roles
n) Teacher Professional Development – Training and Continuing Professional Development
o) Past into Present: Lessons from History Education’s history

12. Citizenship Education

a) History Education: the temporal and cognitive ‘Doing History’ dimension of citizenship education?
b) History and Citizenship Education – Its relevance, importance and significance in an era of:

  •  Migration, immigration and refugee and migrant education
  • Terrorism and resistance movements in Europe, Africa and the wider world
  • Inequality, poverty and social exclusion
  • The global imperatives: economic, environmental, health and well-being, population growth, climate change, global warming,
  • Racism and diversity
  • Retrospection and introspection – past into present and The Guilty Past – see also themes 1, 6, 13, 18

c) Facing the Guilty Past: Education for reconciliation in society’s with guilty past’s that are ever present and need resolution / reconciliation
d) Populism – the new Trumpite & Chinese digital age phenomenon and its drivers and implications

13. Controversial, Contested, Emotive and Sensitive Issues, see also Themes 5, 7 and ?

a) History and the teaching of contested, emotive and controversial issues, including the Guilty Past, see also themes 1, 6, 12, 18
b) History Education in polities with violent, traumatic and socially fractured pasts
c) The role of history education in conflict or post conflict communities: peace and reconciliation
d) Teaching history in divided societies with separate government policies, school and Higher Education curricula, resources, assessment and professional development
e) Institutionally divided educational provision: ethnic, trivial, cultural, religious, ideological schools and schooling
f) Holocaust, diaspora and genocide education: from earliest times to the modern day
g) The Guilty Past: ethnicity, eugenics & the misuse of science, discrimination, racism, ideology &   religion from the Spanish                   Inquisition to the Stalinist Terror and Jihad
h) The Guilty Past – political, doctrinaire, faith and religious persecution, totalitarianism, and ethnic cleansing
i) Holocaust, diaspora and genocide education: from earliest times to the modern day

AREA D. THE TEACHING OF HISTORY – Curricula, Pedagogy and Didactics, History Teaching, 3-11 and 11-21, Assessment

14. Curriculum Development, Implementation and Evaluation

a) Curriculum development in the creation of an Intervention Strategy, i.e. a new curriculum: its purpose, nature, creation, implementation, impact, assessment and revision.
b) History education and creativity
c) Archaeology & History Education including Heritage Education
d) Issues and factors in curriculum development: the political, philosophical, ethnic, faith/religion, ideological, historical, cultural, nationalistic, patriotic and emotional dimensions
e) Contemporary, Social and Cultural History: Curricula Design & Perspectivity
f) History Wars and history curricula: the political, patriotic, nationalistic and xenophobic dimension of battles over national curricula
g) International history curricula and the international dimension: fantasy, failure or the future?
h) Assessment driven history curricula – assessment as the task force of government based education and implementation
i) Assessment – Its Nature, Purpose and Role & Assessment and Awarding Bodies
j) Social sciences, humanities and integrated curricula
k) The impact of educational thinkers, psychologists and historians, e.g. Dewey, Bruner, Bloom, Piaget, Vygotsky, Henrietta Marshall, Winston Churchill
l) Thematic and conceptual curricula, e.g. MACOS, Man, Place and Society, the spiral curriculum
m) Pedagogic curriculum developments: turning theory and philosophy into children’s learning
n) History curricula and:

  • the history teacher’s craft knowledge
  • the impact of ICT in the digital age
  • the Creative Curriculum
  • the negotiated; curriculum: empowering pupils
  • Literacy and the Language of History
  • measuring and developing progression; in historical learning
  • the challenge of Differentiation;
  • Special Educational Needs, including Gifted & Talented Education

15. Pedagogy and Didactics: The History Teachers’ Craft Teaching Styles and Pupil Progress

History teaching protocols: complex, sophisticated and effective psychological tools

a) History teaching protocols [lesson plans – scripts]: complex, sophisticated and effective psychological tools
b) Doing History – History as enquiry, investigation and detection
c) History as Imaginative Reconstruction
d) History, Induction and Deduction, i.e. logical and creative, imaginative evidentially informed thinking
e) Questions and Questioning
f) Musing, Theories, Ideas, Hypotheses and Conclusions
g) Interpretation
h) Evidence & Understanding
i) Pedagogic & Didactic Network of Teaching Protocols including:

  • Enquiry and Investigation
  • Questions and Questioning
  • Sources and Evidence
  • Chronological Understanding
  • Significance and Perspective
  • Narratives and Accounts
  • Theories, Hypotheses and Interpretations
  • Inductive and Deductive Thinking: Logical, Speculative and Imaginative
  • Sources and Evidence
  • The Internet as a Research Tool
  • The Visual Image – Iconic
  • The Moving Image: film, video, web cams
  • Animation and modelling
  • Oracy – Dialogics – Speaking, Listening, Hearing, Responding
  • Discussion, Debate and Argument
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Maps and Plans
  • Local History
  • Family History
  • Drama
  • Simulation
  • Story Telling
  • Expressive Movement
  • Historical Sites and The Environment
  • Presentation and Communication
  • The Internet: as a history education medium

16. History Education in The Early Years and Primary Phases [Ages 3-11]

a) 3-11 year olds epistemic beliefs about history
b) Fairy stories, fables, legends, myths, tales, sagas, stories; accounts, chronicles, histories and narratives;
c) Anniversaries, celebrations, festivals and ceremonies. Their role in and impact upon:
d) The identity agenda: personal, familial, social, ethnic, religious, local, regional
e) National and global – a sense of belonging
f) Constructing the past
g) Attitudes, beliefs, behaviours, ethics, identity – belonging and values
h) The curriculum: what is taught, i.e. Which topics are introduced, why chosen?
i) Sequence & content: chronology, temporal understanding and perspective
j) Textbooks, journals and on-line publications and their influence on teaching and learning
k) Resources for the primary phase: oral, printed, written, graphic, artefactual, tactile, archaeological
l) Primary history in the digital age: on-line and digital media, resourcing and their influence on pedagogy and pupils
m) Children’s understanding of historical concepts both substantive [propositional – substantive, positivistic/factual – first order] and syntactic [procedural, disciplinary – second order] n) Children’s understanding of the nature of history
o) History across and in the primary curriculum: disciplinary, social science and humanities perspectives
p) Linking local, national and global history
q) Promoting and developing historical thinking in young children: i.e. ‘Doing History’ knowledge and understanding of disciplinary concepts, procedures, substantive concepts, narratives, accounts and interpretations, protocols and cognition
r) Creativity and the informed imagination
s) Classroom Strategies: re-enactment, drama, role-play, simulation and the informed imagination
t) Classroom Strategies [2]: historical investigation, hypotheses, interpretations, discussion, debate and history as construction
u)  Story-telling, narrative and reconstruction: bringing the past to life

17. History Education in the Secondary, 11-18, and Tertiary Phases, 18-25 

a) Textbooks, journals and on-line publications and their influence on teaching and learning
b) Consult over themes that cover the field of secondary and tertiary education

18. Statutory Curriculum Documents, National Curricula and National Examinations/Testing

a) National curricula in countries with regional and communal histories that are in conflict with the national master narrative or canon, including dealing with the Guilty past, see also themes 1, 6, 12, 13
b) The implementation and interpretation of statutory curriculum documents in classroom contexts
c) The correlation between national curricula, their implementation and pupil’s historical learning
d) National and other curricula’s impact upon teaching materials and classroom practice/pedagogy
e) The PISA [Programme of International Student Assessment], the OECD and PISA’s impact upon History Education through governments’ overt politicisation of national curricula

19. Assessment – Its Nature, Purpose and Role

a) The recording, monitoring and reporting of historical teaching and learning
b) Peer assessment, formative, summative and diagnostic assessment
c) Criterion based and norm-referenced assessment
d) Assessment based learning [teaching to the test] and its impact upon the curriculum and its implementation, i.e. teaching and learning [assessment based learning or learning based assessment?] e) The impact of government inspection and examinations, testing and assessment
f)The overall, every day impact of assessment on teaching, learning and pupil’s personal development – cognitive, values, attitudes, behaviours, emotional intelligence etc.
g) Assessment as indoctrination

20. Assessment and Awarding Bodies

Assessment universally for History at the Secondary level is in the hands of Assessment and Awarding Bodies. These bodies gather extensive data, evidence, about examination performance that influences and shapes their curricula, in the context of government overview and guidance. Yet, this major, if not the major area of History Education research is something that the Education Research community has largely, if not totally, ignored.

With assessment driven / controlled history teaching – this is a vital area for the History Education community to consider.

a) The role, nature, activity, influence and findings of Assessment and Awarding bodies in History Education
b) The overall role, nature, activity, influence and impact of Assessment upon History


(Themes to be added)


21. Pure and Applied Research and Evidence Based History Education

a) Research design and approaches for both new and experienced researchers
b) Collaboration and partnerships between schools and universities and other agencies
c) Case Study Research – academic
d) Curriculum Development – school based
e) Curriculum Development – assessment bodies and government agencies
f)  Curriculum Development – academically based in Higher Education
g) Curriculum Development, Implementation & Evaluation
h) Evidence led policy and practice: institutionally grounded
u) Multi Methods Research [MMR], Mono Method Research
j)  New frontiers in History Educational Research: theory, scholarship and practice
k) Qualitative research – in the context of ‘cases’ based upon practitioner-research & evidence-based praxis
l)  Quantitative research – in the context of ‘cases’ based upon practitioner-research & evidence-based praxis
m)University research in collaboration with teachers – partnership
n) Researching Impact: control and pilot groups
o) Research, government / jurisdiction educational policy, curricula and professional development
p) Medical model of research involving practitioners at all levels, and their implementation

22. Complementary Workshops

  • The research workshops will take place if possible within one of another conference session’s two parallel strands.
  • A single 90 minutes or two consecutive 45 minutes workshops can be held in a strand.
  • Workshops should be theoretical, empirically grounded and fully conversant with the related literature, scholarship and research.
  • Where there is an introductory paper for a workshop in a papers session, the workshop will be in the subsequent conference session if possible

Workshop proposers need to submit an abstract for their workshop in addition to the abstract for the related, introductory conference paper if they wish to make a paper presentation.

Workshop proposers need to submit an abstract for their workshop in addition to the abstract for the related, introductory conference paper

Submit Submission