Pre-service secondary teachers’ competence in civic education

Sum Cho PO

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers


In the transitional period, there has been a general concern among Hong Kong people that out young citizens are not adequately prepared for the reunification of Hong Kong with China. They demanded a more effective civic education programme in both primary and secondary schools. There are different modes of implementation of civic education in the Hong Kong secondary schools. In the formal curriculum, civic education is mainly carried out through the subjects of Social Studies or Economics and Public Affairs. This paper identifies teachers’ competence as a major factor which determines the effectiveness of the civic education programme and evaluates the competence of pre-service secondary Social Studies teachers in implementing civic education through the teaching of the subject of Social Studies. The research project mainly adopted a quantitative method. Through the instrument of questionnaires, student teachers were required to conduct self-evaluation of their competence in implementing civic education in secondary schools. At the same time, this instrument is supplemented by a semi-structured group interview on the student teachers’ understanding and perception of civic education. The findings show that final year student teachers of Social Studies are, in general, not well equipped in both knowledge and skills in implementing civic education in secondary schools. The findings are thoroughly analyzed and their implications for teacher education discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1997


Po, S. C. (1997, December). Pre-service secondary teachers’ competence in civic education. Paper presented at the Third UNESCO-ACEID International Conference: Educational Innovation for Sustainable Development, Bangkok, Thailand.


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