ERIC Number: ED436575
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999-Nov
Does Research Matter to the Classroom Teacher?
White, Evelyn; Gary, Todd
A graduate course that challenged classroom teachers to make a meaningful connection between the research literature and effective classroom teaching strategies was designed and analyzed. The Tennessee State University course, Advanced Science in the Elementary School, is a team-taught doctoral level course for teachers trained in a hands-on science reform project to develop higher quality science teaching and student learning. During the fall semester of 1998, 12 teachers enrolled in this course located and critiqued research articles that support effective teaching strategies such as cooperative groups, inquiry, and the learning cycle. Then these participants wrote papers that described how the findings connected with the project and their classroom teaching. In this course, inquiry-based lesson plans were also prepared, science curricular materials were evaluated, and science activities were synthesized to align with state and national guidelines. One semester after taking the course, the teachers were asked how they applied the research findings in their classes and in leadership roles in the project. Their work, videotapes of the presentations, and followup responses were analyzed. Results suggest that once teachers see a connection between research and the classroom, the research becomes of value to them. Schools should provide professional development opportunities that encourage teachers to explore the value of research to their profession. Appendixes contain information on the course, the titles of research papers, and the postcourse survey. (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mid-South Educational Research Association (Point Clear, AL, November 17-19, 1999).