Gough Whitlam case study

A learning sequence where students investigate changing interpretations of the Whitlam government over time, to support the study of History Extension.

Through close study of the ongoing historiographical debate surrounding documentation relating to the dismissal, students comprehend the vast variation in historical perspectives on Whitlam's leadership, the socio-political drama surrounding the dismissal of his government and the lasting impact of his reforms. Students focus on the impact of the historian’s relationship to their subject, on the influence of new evidence and on historian’s context on the construction of History. They progress from teacher-directed learning into a student-directed approach that sees them constructing their own understanding of Whitlam histories.

Focus questions

  • How does the historian’s relationship with their subject influence the construction of history?
  • How does the discovery of new evidence influence the construction of history?
  • How do the events and politics of the historian’s own context impact on the construction of history?

This resource includes a glossary of terms to support student learning.


Please note:

Syllabus outcomes and content descriptors from Modern History Extension Stage 6 Syllabus (2017) © NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) for and on behalf of the Crown in right of the State of New South Wales, 2017

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