University of Oulu

Eerika Virranmäki, Kirsi Valta-Hulkkonen & Anne Pellikka (2021) Geography Curricula Objectives and Students’ Performance: Enhancing the Student’s Higher-Order Thinking Skills?, Journal of Geography, DOI: 10.1080/00221341.2021.1877330

Geography curricula objectives and students’ performance : enhancing the student’s higher-order thinking skills?

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Author: Virranmäki, Eerika1; Valta-Hulkkonen, Kirsi2; Pellikka, Anne3
Organizations: 1Geography Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Teacher Training School, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
3Faculty of Education, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.7 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Informa, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-03-08


This paper centers on to evaluate whether and to what extent the learning objectives of the geography curricula emphasize students’ higher-order thinking skills (HOTS), and whether students are capable of answering to HOTS-questions by using the Finnish upper secondary geography education as an example. The revised Bloom’s taxonomy was used as a framework for the content analysis. The findings show that geography has the potential to enhance students’ HOTS, but students experience difficulties when answering to HOTS-questions. The results could be used to evaluate the desired thinking skills and knowledge dimensions in geography education for to enhance students meaningful learning.

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Series: Journal of geography
ISSN: 0022-1341
ISSN-E: 1752-6868
ISSN-L: 0022-1341
Volume: In press
DOI: 10.1080/00221341.2021.1877330
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1171 Geosciences
Funding: This work was supported by LUMA (STEM) Centre of the University of Oulu.
Copyright information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.