Social studies education and the preparation of social studies teachers is a highly contested arena. A key issue social studies educators continually wrestle with is whether social studies education should promote a brand of citizenship that is adaptive to the status quo and interests of the socially powerful or whether it should promote citizenship aimed at transforming and reconstructing society (Hursh & Ross, 2000; Ross, 2006; Ross & Marker, 2005).
In our democratic society, all teachers and teacher educators--regardless of subject area--can learn from the ideas shared by social studies educators that deal with how to make education in an "era of accountability" more responsive to democratic ideals that form the foundation of social studies teaching and curriculum. We believe that the ongoing discussion of research, theory, and practice in social studies teacher education has the potential to benefit all teacher educators in critically examining and transforming their practices to better meet the needs of P-16 students.
Social Studies Teacher Education
This themed issue of Teacher Education Quarterly focuses on the status of social studies teacher education in an era where social studies education is suffering from declining curricular importance in elementary and secondary schools amidst issues such as accountability, standardization of the curriculum, the neo-conservative agenda, social justice, and teaching for a democratic society. The articles included here examine how both teachers and teacher educators respond to these issues in preservice and inservice teacher education experiences, assess the impact of these contexts on the preparation of social studies teachers in …