ERIC Number: ED421348
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Apr-19
A Longitudinal Assessment of Teacher Candidates' Attitudes and Beliefs in a Reform-Based Mathematics and Science Teacher Preparation Program.
McGinnis, J. Randy; Kramer, Steve; Watanabe, Tad
This study describes the ongoing use of a valid and reliable instrument to measure longitudinally teacher candidates' attitudes and beliefs. The instrument, "Attitudes and Beliefs about the Nature of and the Teaching of Mathematics and Science," was developed for the Maryland Collaborative for Teacher Preparation (MCTP). The MCTP is a National Science Foundation-funded undergraduate teacher preparation program for science and mathematics elementary/middle level teachers. Data were collected from 1995 to Fall 1997. During the Fall 1995 and Spring 1996 semesters the instrument was administered in MCTP classes twice each semester to the study participants (N=104; 100% response). During the Fall 1996 and Spring 1997 semesters the instrument was mailed to the study participants at the end of each semester (N=96; 46% Fall response; 75% Spring response). Since individual responses to the questionnaire were not independent, the unit-of analysis responses from five institutions participating in the program were used. Survey responses within each institution were aggregated and changes analyzed (repeated-measures t-test design). It was determined that the MCTP appears to be affecting participating teacher candidates' attitudes towards and beliefs about mathematics and science in the direction intended. In particular, the MCTP teacher candidates' attitudes and beliefs moved in the desired direction on all five subscales of the instrument. Moreover, the magnitude of change was statistically significant at the .01 level for the subscale measuring "Beliefs about the Nature of Mathematics and Science" and for the subscale measuring "Beliefs about Teaching Mathematics and Science". In addition, the magnitude of change for the subscale measuring "Attitudes towards Mathematics and Science" approached statistical significance. It is believed that these findings make a highly significant contribution to the science and mathematics education research communities interested in documenting the attitudinal and belief journeys of teacher candidates participating in reform-based teacher preparation programs. (Contains 4 tables, 5 figures, and 29 references. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (71st, San Diego, CA, April 19-22, 1998). For related document, see SE 061 547.