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ERIC Number: EJ923490
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 44
ISSN: ISSN-1756-1108
Graduate Teaching Assistants' Epistemological and Metacognitive Development
Sandi-Urena, Santiago; Cooper, Melanie M.; Gatlin, Todd A.
Chemistry Education Research and Practice, v12 n1 p92-100 2011
Research in general chemistry laboratory instruction has rarely focused on the impact of the learning environment on the graduate teaching assistants (GTAs). We decided to investigate the effect that facilitating a well established cooperative problem-based chemistry laboratory has on GTAs' epistemological and metacognitive development, and how this may translate into their scientific professional growth. Thirteen new GTAs underwent a day and a half teaching training complemented by weekly staff meetings. They were interviewed after their first semester as GTAs, and the data collected were analyzed utilizing a phenomenological approach. Three dimensions that describe the experience lived by the participants emerged from the analysis: affective engagement, metacognitive engagement, and epistemological reflection. The last two offer a rich description of how the laboratory context promotes GTAs' metacognitive and epistemological development, whereas the former provides understanding about the motivation driving their intellectual engagement. Considering the role of metacognition in research, and that personal epistemology is strongly tied to identity development, and that it shapes expectations and ways of learning, it is our contention that appropriate teaching experiences may contribute to better prepare graduate students for their journey in becoming scientists and to embark on successful research. (Contains 1 table and 2 figures.)
Royal Society of Chemistry. Thomas Graham House, Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0WF, UK. Tel: +44-1223 420066; Fax: +44-1223 423623; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A