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ERIC Number: EJ1144173
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0950-0693
EISSN: N/A
What Is Motivating Middle-School Science Teachers to Teach Climate Change?
McNeal, Peggy; Petcovic, Heather; Reeves, Patricia
International Journal of Science Education, v39 n8 p1069-1088 2017
Adoption of science content standards that include anthropogenic climate change has prompted widespread instruction in climate change for the first time. However, the controversial nature of the topic can be daunting and many teachers share misconceptions that lead to weak treatment of climate change in classrooms. Nevertheless, numerous teachers have embraced the topic and are providing illustrations of deliberate climate change education. In this study we investigated teacher motivation using focus groups with middle school teachers who currently teach climate change. Qualitative analysis of the collective teacher voices yielded underlying motivations. Our findings suggest that these teachers' interest in environmentalism naturally translates to climate change advocacy and motivates teaching the topic. Their knowledge and expertise gives them confidence to teach it. These teachers see themselves as scientists, therefore their views align with the scientific consensus. They practice authentic scientific research with their students, thus confirming valued characteristics of their scientist identity. Finally, our findings suggest that teaching climate change gives these teachers a sense of hope as they impact the future through their students. This study contrasts with skepticism over the state of climate change education and contributes to an understanding of how climate change education is motivated in teachers.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 530 Walnut Street Suite 850, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Tel: 215-625-8900; Fax: 215-207-0050; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A