ERIC Number: ED414199
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Nov-13
Reference Count: N/A
Leadership Interns in Undergraduate Elementary School Science Education Programs.
Yore, Larry D.
This paper reports on an on-going action research study of the elementary school science education courses at the University of Victoria in Canada. The Department of Social and Natural Sciences requires that professors evaluate their teaching effectiveness annually using a variety of methods such as student evaluations, peer observations, course outline analyses, and other methods approved by the department chair. This requirement provides an excellent opportunity to conduct action research to document teaching, to reflect upon teaching, to improve practice, and to revise course outlines based on multiple sources of data. The leadership component of a course entitled Science Instruction in the Elementary School is the focus of this paper. This course attempts to enhance science education leadership in five ways: (1) develop knowledge of science education reforms, curricula, instruction, and assessment; (2) develop communication skills (oral and written); (3) workshop experience; (4) collaborative planning; and (5) reflective practice. All assignments except the final examination address these issues. The specific focus of this action research was the teaching internship in science. The effectiveness of the internship was documented with instructional artifacts produced by the interns (unit plans, lesson plans, class hand-outs), professors' journal notes and classroom observations, school principal and classroom teacher comments, and course evaluation comments. Qualitative analyses of these data sources revealed that the positive benefits of this internship include an improved relationship with the school, enhanced self-concept and teaching effectiveness of interns, a professor who can describe the teaching effectiveness of all elementary school science majors, and informal professional development for classroom teachers and professors. The negative aspects of the internship were that not all peer-pairs were effective collaborators, the school experience placed significant time demands on university students and professors, professional development experiences could be more formalized, and follow-up activities should be planned. (Author/DKM)
Descriptors: Action Research, Communication Skills, Course Evaluation, Educational Assessment, Educational Change, Elementary Education, Elementary School Science, Evaluation, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Inservice Teacher Education, Internship Programs, Preservice Teacher Education, Qualitative Research, Science Instruction, Teacher Collaboration, Undergraduate Study
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A