Changing Attitudes, Changing Behaviors. Conceptual Change as a Model for Teaching Freedom of Religion or Belief


  • Mary Anne Rea Ramirez Hardwired, Inc.
  • Tina Marie Ramirez Hardwired, Inc.



Purpose: The purpose is to demonstrate that conceptual change theory and strategies can be applied to areas of the social science, such as human rights education on FORB.

Design/methodology/approach: The theoretical scope of this paper is conceptual change theory and is intended to introduce the theory and practice of conceptual change in teaching about FORB in social sciences and how it was used in training teachers.

Findings: Conceptual change theory and strategies were found to be effective in teaching about FORB.

Practical implications: This study introduces the use of conceptual change theory and strategies in teaching about human rights.

Author Biographies

Mary Anne Rea Ramirez, Hardwired, Inc.

Dr. Rea-Ramirez holds a Doctorate of Education from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and has  taught elementary through graduate education science, medicine, instructional technology, and teacher education. Her research in education involves in-depth study of cognition and learning, particularly in the area of model based learning and teaching, conceptual change, and innovative pedagogy.  While she is now teaching part-time for several universities, her main focus is human rights education and conducting research on programs for Hardwired Global.

Tina Marie Ramirez, Hardwired, Inc.

As Hardwired’s president and CEO, Tina Ramirez has 15 years of policy experience in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region and 18 years in education that resulted in development of a unique training program that has been used in Sudan, Nigeria, Morroco, Lebanon, Israel, and Iraq, allowing Hardwired to gain support from indigenous leaders in some of the hardest countries in the world.  She previously directed international programs at The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, and prior to this served as a policy researcher at the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and as a foreign policy advisor for various members of the U.S. Congress where I was the founding staff director for the bi-partisan Congressional International Religious Freedom Caucus.  Ms Ramirez received graduate degrees in international human rights and religious freedom from the University of Essex, and has assessed the different challenges to religious freedom in more than 30 countries.  She wrote a book on Iraq and is a contributing author and editor of Human Rights in the United States: A Dictionary and Documents (2010 and 2017). 


Additional Files

  • Abstract
  • PDF
  • Figure 1
  • Title Page
Further information



How to Cite

Ramirez, M. A. R., & Ramirez, T. M. (2018). Changing Attitudes, Changing Behaviors. Conceptual Change as a Model for Teaching Freedom of Religion or Belief. JSSE - Journal of Social Science Education, 16(4), 98–109.