Comparison Matrix



Education theories




Integrated social studies learning

An interdisciplinary social studies’ teaching method that involves combining several disciplines and creating students and teachers’ teams that enhance the entire scholastic experience (Jones, 2010).

Integrated social studies learning approach offer benefits such as enhancing students’ achievement and understanding in all disciplines. The approach requires students to familiarize with various topics, which in turn improve their proficiency in disciplines related to the subject. Moreover, the approach improves individual students’ communication skills through increasing their knowledge on many topics (Jones, 2010).

However, the learning approach has serious weaknesses such as creating confusion. Students learning several subjects are vulnerable to confusion arising from learning several and different information simultaneously. Curriculum designers also assert that creating effective curriculum is challenging since the pedagogy should aim at equipping students with relevant skills to a society (Jones, 2010).

Textbook social studies learning

A curriculum based book that is integrated with the social media to guide pedagogy design (Tay, 2013).

Textbook social studies learning offers various benefits. First, the textbooks serve as a students’ information resource, but it is not the sole source of academic information. Second, the books serve as guides, but they are not the main source of academic content. An instructor can complement the information recorded in the book with recent studies published in social media after the textbook was already published. Third, teachers have the autonomy to remove, edit or even change given content in the textbook. In many cases, the content of textbooks may become obsolete between the publication and use by students. The social media can fill the time gap effectively. Lastly, social media complements the information in the book using external readings such as national conferences speeches, research periodicals and regional and local informative events (Tay, 2013).

One of the textbook social studies learning is that the content recorded in a book can be outdated between the publication and release of the book to the targeted students. Second, the questions in textbooks are often generic hence, it has limited facts. Third, textbooks are often intended to serve as the sole source of valuable information. Third, many textbooks do not incorporate the knowledge specific knowledge related to students. Lastly, the book is an ineffective social learning teaching tool because it contains all the answers for the questions (Tay, 2013).

Commercially purchased social studies learning

A learning method that uses commercially bought curriculum and course material (Gentry, 2007).

Commercially purchased social studies learning offers various benefits such as diverse curriculum content that is otherwise impossible to acquire from a single source. This implies that both educators can order customized information. Second, the content is often made available on demand. Third, the commercial curriculum is often reliable because experienced professionals in given field are responsible for creating the content. Fourth, educators and students can use commercial resources across the globe, which significantly increases the source of knowledge. Finally, the learning approach does improve group work, problem solving, and critical thinking and writing among other relevant knowledge (Gentry, 2007).

Commercially purchased social studies learning has weaknesses such as offering uniform information to students from various backgrounds. Educators and students in different institutions that could have developed distinct information if they were left independently tend to adopt similar information. This makes students from different institutions kill diversity that institutions with independent curriculum often have. Second, easy access of essential information to students might prevent them from investing adequate due diligence they require to attain desirable quality of content (Gentry, 2007).

Teacher-prepared social studies learning

Teacher-prepared social studies learning requires a teacher to gather the material and curriculum information. Students use information compiled by the instructors in their studies (Sweeney, &amp Garrett, 1990).

One of the teacher-prepared social studies learning benefits includes that it enhances direct learning simplicity because an educator can practically illustrate the target concepts to the students. Second, teachers make reliable and relevant information because they specifically design content to suit a given class. Finally, it saves the students the confusion dilemma caused by the inability of determining the important and unessential part of the content (Sweeney, &amp Garrett, 1990).

The learning method tends to follow a very rigid procedure that may prevent versatility of teachers. The information may also have below standard quality in case it is prepared by an inadequately prepared instructor. Lastly, the instructors tend to do most of the work, which hinders students from using their creativity in conducting independent research. Moreover, the research information lacks diversity required for enhancing creativity among students since they rely on an instructor’s research outcome (Sweeney, &amp Garrett, 1990).


Jones,C. (2010). Interdisciplinary Approach – Advantages, Disadvantages,and the Future Benefits of Interdisciplinary Studies. ESSAI,7 (26): 1-7.

Sweeney,J.A.C., &amp Garrett, A.W. (1990). Classroom Practice andEducational Research. SocialStudies,81(6). 278-82.

Tay,B. (2013). Elaboration and Organization Strategies Used byProspective Class Teachers While Studying Social Studies EducationTextbooks.Eurasian Journal of Educational Research(EJER). 51 (24), 229-252.

Gentry,J., Fowler, T., Nichols, B. (2007). Textbook Preferences: ThePossibilities of Individualized Learning in Social Studies with anIndividualized Textbook. Journalof Interactive Learning Research,18 (4).493-510.