NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1090915
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8326
Testing Predictors of Instructional Practice in Elementary Science Education: The Significant Role of Accountability
Hayes, Kathryn N.; Trexler, Cary J.
Science Education, v100 n2 p266-289 Mar 2016
Many resources have been committed to research on science teaching pedagogies, resulting in a robust understanding of best instructional practices. Yet, exposure to excellent science instruction in elementary school is haphazard at best and often inequitable. Although the research community has attended to the role of teacher traits, such as attitude and preparation, very little research examines the role of policy and context in constraining or supporting such best practices at the elementary level. This study attempts to fill this need through a multilevel model of how teacher traits, socioeconomic context (SE context), and accountability pressures predict students' opportunity to engage in hands-on and laboratory science education. Results indicate accountability pressure eclipsed all other predictors, including SE context, in accounting for variance in the model. Final analysis indicates that teachers at high accountability pressure schools spent about 60% less time using hands-on and laboratory teaching methods than teachers at lower accountability pressure schools, an equity issue given the distribution of underrepresented students. Teacher traits including professional development, experience, attitude, and degree were insignificant in the model. This has implications for efforts to improve elementary science education in the United States, as research and national priorities have been focused primarily on teacher development.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A