ERIC Number: EJ916261
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Inquiry-Based Learning in China: Do Teachers Practice What They Preach, and Why?
Dai, David Yun; Gerbino, Kathryn A.; Daley, Michael J.
Frontiers of Education in China, v6 n1 p139-157 Mar 2011
China is undergoing an education reform that calls for a change from a rigid, fixed curriculum and didactic pedagogy to a more flexible, school-based curriculum and more inquiry-based pedagogy. This study investigated the extent to which Chinese middle and high school teachers (a) endorse an inquiry-based approach and underlying learning principles, (b) practice this mode of teaching, and (c) believe that the approach is practically viable in the current educational contexts in China. A structured survey was developed to solicit Chinese teachers' responses to the above three issues. A total of 582 valid responses were collected, representing middle and high schools in different geographic locations. The results show that Chinese teachers are receptive to inquiry-based pedagogy but find practical constraints in fully implementing it. Several cultural and pragmatic reasons are explored. Policy implications are discussed with respect to teacher education/development, capacity building for the new pedagogy, and teaching/evaluation alignment. Finally cultural issues are discussed regarding using inquiry-based learning to enhance critical thinking and nurture independent thinkers.
Descriptors: Instructional Design, Inquiry, Active Learning, Educational Change, Foreign Countries, Secondary School Teachers, Teaching Methods, Surveys, Teacher Response, Instruction, Teacher Education, Critical Thinking, Cultural Influences
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Middle Schools; Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China