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The Effect of Communication and Immigration Activities in 7th Grade Social Studies Course on the Empathy Skills of Students

Birol Bulut, Süleyman Aslan


The feeling of empathy is as old as the humankind. Empathy is an attempt to perceive the emotions and to understand the thoughts of other individuals and discern their point of view. Due to such aspects, empathy presents “a focus on other individuals”. In general terms, empathy was defined as “adopting a sensitive attitude towards correctly understanding the emotions and thoughts of another individual, encountering any event, through placing oneself in the place of that individual during the process of communication.” The present study was intended to determine the effects of the communication and immigration subjects in the 7th grade social studies course on the empathy skills of students through employing the didactic approach, which is one of the techniques for empathy development. Concurrent nested (embedded) design, a mixed research method, was employed in the present study. Mixed-method research is defined as the approach through which the researcher draws conclusions by using the advantage of integrating qualitative and quantitative methods, approaches and concepts in a study or consecutive studies with the aim to understand diverse research models. The quantitative data in the present study were obtained via the “Index of Empathy for Children and Adolescents”, whereas the qualitative data were collected through interview forms. Almost all students emphasized the significance of empathy and understanding the feelings of the migrants for understanding the causes and consequences of immigration throughout the activities related to immigration.