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ERIC Number: EJ1004312
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 42
ISSN: ISSN-1554-9178
Education Majors' Expectations and Reported Experiences with Inquiry-Based Physics: Implications for Student Affect
Gaffney, Jon D. H.
Physical Review Special Topics - Physics Education Research, v9 n1 p010112-1-010112-16 Jan-Jun 2013
To address a perennial need to provide K-8 teachers with a solid foundation in science, there are many physics content courses throughout the United States. One such course is Physics and Astronomy for Teachers (PAT), which relies heavily on active-learning strategies. Although PAT is successful in teaching physics content, students sometimes report dissatisfaction with the course. Such instances of poor affect are worrisome because they may influence how teachers present science in their own classrooms. Therefore, this study investigates students' affect in terms of their pedagogical expectations and potential personal learning outcomes with respect to PAT. Two sections of PAT, each containing approximately 40 students, were observed. Students in those sections were surveyed, and a sample were interviewed (N=10). An analysis of the data in terms of an expectancy violation framework shows that while students' expectations regarding the hands-on and interactive components of PAT were met, they received substantially fewer lectures, class discussions, and opportunities to make class presentations than they had expected, even after they had been presented with the course syllabus and informed about the specific nature of the course. Additionally, students expected PAT to be more directly linked with their future teaching careers and therefore expected more opportunities to practice teaching science than they reported receiving. This investigation serves as a case study to provide insight into why students are sometimes frustrated and confused when first encountering active-learning classes, and it implies that instructors should be cognizant of those feelings and devote resources toward explicit orientation that emphasizes the purpose of the course and reasons behind their pedagogical choices. (Contains 4 tables and 6 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Kentucky