Perspectives of History and Philosophy on Teaching Astronomy



The didactics of astronomy is a relatively young field with respect to that of other sciences. Historical issues have most often been part of the teaching of astronomy, although that often does not stem from a specific didactics. The teaching of astronomy is often subsumed under that of physics. One can easily consider that, from an educational standpoint, astronomy requires the same mathematical or physical strategies. This approach may be adequate in many cases but cannot stand as a general principle for the teaching of astronomy.

This chapter offers in a first part a brief overview of the status of astronomy education research and of the role of the history and philosophy of science (HPS) in astronomy education. In a second part, it attempts to illustrate possible ways to structure the teaching of astronomy around its historical development so as to pursue a quality education and contextualized learning.


Solar System Natural Kind Celestial Body Planetary Orbit Planetary Motion 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Educational Management DirectionNational Ministry of EducationBuenos AiresArgentina
  2. 2.Department of PhilosophyWestern University, and Rotman Institute of PhilosophyLondonCanada

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