ORAL HISTORY SOURCES AS LEARNING MATERIALS: A CASE STUDY OF THE NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Knowledge presented by Oral History (OH) is unique in that it shares the tacit perspective, thoughts, opinions and understanding of the interviewee in its primary form. While teachers, lecturers and other education specialists have at their disposal a wide range of primary, secondary and tertiary sources upon which to relate and share or impart knowledge, OH presents a rich source of information that can improve the learning and knowledge impartation experience. The uniqueness of OH is presented in the following advantages of its use: it allows one to learn about the perspectives of individuals who might not otherwise appear in the historical record; it allows one to compensate for the digital age; one can learn different kinds of information; it provides historical actors with an opportunity to tell their own stories in their own words; and it offers a rich opportunity for human interaction. This article discusses the placement of oral history in the classroom set-up by investigating its use as a source of learning material presented by the National Archives of Zimbabwe to students in the Department of Records and Archives Management at the National University of Science and Technology (NUST). Interviews and a group discussion were used to gather data from an archivist at the National Archives of Zimbabwe, lecturers and students in the Department of Records and Archives Management at NUST, respectively. These groups were approached on the usability, uniqueness and other characteristics that support this type of knowledge about OH in a tertiary learning experience. The findings indicate several qualities that reflect the richness of OH as a teaching source material in a classroom set-up. It further points to weak areas that may be addressed where the source is considered a viable strategy for knowledge sharing and learning. The researchers present a possible model that can be used to champion the use of this rich knowledge source in classroom education at this university and in similar set-ups.
Baylor University Institute for Oral History. 2012. Introduction to oral history. Retrieved from http://www.baylor.edu/content/services/document.php/43912.pdf (accessed 2 October
Consortium of Oral History Educators. Oral history in the classroom. Retrieved from www. sonoma.edu/tah2/lessons/.../oral/oral_history_in_the_classroom.rtf (accessed 2 October 2013).
Craver, K. D. 1999. Using internet primary sources to teach critical thinking skills in history. Denver: Libraries Unlimited.
Filer, P. 2008. Oral histories in the classroom: A curriculum and project guide for secondary school students. Retrieved from http://www.historylink.org/_-content/education/downloads/ Oral%20History%20Curriculum.pdf (accessed 2 October 2013).
Ibragimov, A., Ivanov, A., Riethmüller, P., Schimmack, B., Uhl, T. T. K. & Von Winning, A. 2008.
Oral history: Regional memory in Kazan. Retrieved from http://www.kazan-memory.uni- tuebingen.de/oralhistengl.html (accessed 15 November 2012).
Lance, D. n.d. Oral history: Collection and development. Retrieved from www.unesco.org
(accessed 15 November 2012).
Manungo, K. 2012. Oral history as captured by the National Archives of Zimbabwe over the years. In P. Ngulube (ed.), The National Archives 70@30, 64–68. Harare: The National Archives of Zimbabwe.
National Archives of Zimbabwe. 2012. Oral history programme. Retrieved from http://www. archives.gov.zw/index.php/oral-history (accessed October 2013).
Ngulube, P. 2012. (ed.). National Archives 75@30: 75 Years of archiving excellence at the National Archives of Zimbabwe. Harare: National Archives of Zimbabwe.
Raleigh, V. 2005. Recording oral history: A guide for humanities and social sciences. Oxford: Altamira Press.
Shopes, L. n.d. Making sense of oral history. Retrieved from http://historymatters.gmu.edu/mse/
oral/oral.pdf (accessed 2 October 2013).
Thompson, P. R. 1988. The voice of the past: Oral history. New York: Oxford University Press.
University of Leicester. n.d. What is oral history? Retrieved from www.le.ac.uk/emoha/training/
no1.pdf (accessed 2 October 2013).
Whitman, G. 2012. Case study: Oral history in the classroom. In D. Boyd, S. Cohen, B. Rakerd & D. Rehberger (Eds.), Oral history in the digital age. Institute of Library and Museum Services. Retrieved from http://ohda.matrix.msu.edu/2012/06/oral-history-in-the-classroom/ (accessed 2 October 2013).
Retrieved from http://www.phs-chool.com/eteach/social_studies/2003_04/essay.html (accessed 2