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ERIC Number: EJ937843
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9266
Addressing Teachers' Concerns about Teaching Evolution
Sanders, Martie; Ngxola, Nonyameko
Journal of Biological Education, v43 n3 p121-128 2009
Evolution was introduced into the senior secondary school Life Sciences curriculum in South Africa for the first time in 2008. Research in other countries shows that evolution is an extremely controversial topic to teach, raising serious concerns for teachers. Curriculum change theory dealing with "stages of concern" suggests that teachers implementing a new curriculum move through a predictable series of types of concerns, and that if their initial concerns are not addressed then teachers are slow to move on to more important task-related matters. This has serious implications for both professional development programmes and the development of support materials for teachers: information about teachers' concerns is needed so that those having to support teachers can do so on an informed basis. This article identifies the concerns of 125 secondary school teachers having to teach evolution for the first time. Data was gathered using an activity-based questionnaire administered in a workshop setting to four different groups of biology teachers attending inservice workshops on the teaching of evolution, at stages progressively closer to the implementation date. The majority of concerns identified were early-stage "self-concerns", dealing with personal worries and a need for information. Implications of the findings for providing support for teachers with concerns about teaching evolution are discussed. (Contains 4 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa