ERIC Number: ED392610
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995
Reference Count: N/A
Confidence and Understanding in Teaching Science and Technology in Primary Schools.
Harlen, Wynne; And Others
The purpose of this study was to investigate the problems facing primary teachers in implementing the 5-14 guidelines for science and technology and the extent to which these problems are related to teachers' knowledge and understanding of the subject matter in Scotland. Data collection methods included questionnaires and interviews. A key finding was that many primary teachers lack confidence in their ability to teach the science and technology components of the environmental studies curriculum for pupils 5-14 and do not have a sound grasp of the ideas they are expected to develop in their pupils. Other findings include: teachers felt relatively more confident about the teaching of science process skills than about developing understanding of content; there were predictable variations relating to gender and possession of some qualification in science; teachers who had been qualified longer were more confident about teaching mathematics, English, and religious education while those qualified later were more confident about teaching science and technology; low confidence was associated with various factors including disliking science in their own schooling, inadequate initial training, little in-service help, and insufficient resources and support to cope with the practical difficulties; and those teachers who had studied some science in secondary school had a better understanding of science ideas. Contains 53 references and the survey instrument. (JRH)
Descriptors: Elementary Education, Elementary School Teachers, Foreign Countries, Interviews, Knowledge Base for Teaching, Questionnaires, Science Teachers, Teacher Education, Teacher Effectiveness, Technology
Scottish Council for Research in Education, 15 St. John Street, Edinburgh EH8 8JR Scotland, United Kingdom (Publication No. 132).
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Scottish Office Education Dept., Edinburgh.
Authoring Institution: Scottish Council for Research in Education, Edinburgh.
Identifiers: Scotland; Subject Content Knowledge