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What do teachers think about the educational role of comic books?: A qualitative analysis

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An exploratory, qualitative, study into the views of teachers on the use of comic books in education was carried out. Three secondary school teachers with varying experiences of comic books were interviewed using an open-ended format. Results of a thematic analysis indicated three clear areas of thinking around comic books: firstly, comic books are considered to be a medium of children’s entertainment, and not associated with educational practice; secondly, when the medium is employed in education, it should primarily be used with students that require extra support and thirdly, comic books represent a ‘missed opportunity in education’ and have not achieved their full potential due to a lack of comic book resources for use in the classroom. All three concepts are discussed in light of research evidence supporting the use of comics in educational contexts and concerns are highlighted that suggest these themes might represent a barrier to the future use of comics in these areas. Further qualitative and quantitative research to expand these initial findings is also suggested.
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Keywords: comics; education; interviews; psychology; qualitative; schools; teachers; views

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 000000010303540XSheffield Hallam University

Publication date: November 1, 2020

More about this publication?
  • Studies in Comics aims to describe the nature of comics, to identify the medium as a distinct art form, and to address the medium's formal properties. The emerging field of comics studies is a model for interdisciplinary research and in this spirit this journal welcomes all approaches. This journal is international in scope and provides an inclusive space in which researchers from all backgrounds can present new thinking on comics to a global audience. The journal will promote the close analysis of the comics page/text using a variety of methodologies. Its specific goal, however, is to expand the relationship between comics and theory and to articulate a "theory of comics". The journal also includes reviews of new comics, criticism, and exhibitions, and a dedicated online space for cutting-edge and emergent creative work.

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