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ERIC Number: ED554405
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 162
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: 978-1-3031-8993-7
Thinking about Thinking: An Exploration of Preservice Teachers' Views about Higher Order Thinking Skills
Coffman, Diane M.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Kansas
Thinking skills have long been regarded as an essential outcome of the educational process. Yet, research shows that the teaching of thinking skills in K-12 education does not follow a coherent path. Several factors affect the teaching and use of thinking skills in the classroom, with teacher knowledge and beliefs about thinking skills among the strongest influences (Snyder & Snyder, 2008; Torff, 2006). Research addresses the beliefs that practicing educators hold about thinking skills, yet little investigation has been done on the knowledge of thinking skills and the factors which influence their understanding at the preservice teacher level. This study examined the knowledge preservice teachers, at a large midwestern university, hold about thinking skills, specifically "Taxonomy of Educational Objectives: Book 1 Cognitive Domain" (Bloom, 1984), and their stated perceptions of the factors influencing those beliefs. Bloom's Taxonomy was chosen as the basis for describing thinking skills as this Taxonomy is frequently used in K-12 classrooms. Using mixed methods, this study gathered data from preservice teachers in a teacher education program. Data were gathered from the entire sample through a survey and an instrument using instructional vignettes to determine the thinking skill level of K-12 classroom activities, as well as through interviews with a small sample of the participants. Results showed no significant differences in determining the level of Bloom's Taxonomy on the survey vignettes for participant year in school. A difference was found among participants who expressed less comfort in thinking about teaching Higher Order Thinking Skills when choosing the correct thinking level on the vignettes, than the participants who expressed being somewhat comfortable or very comfortable about teaching higher order thinking skills. Interview participants identified influences on their thinking skills, which included challenging high school courses, some college courses, interactions with peers, and student teaching experiences involving Bloom's Taxonomy. More research is needed to determine if expressed comfort level with teaching thinking skills is a predictor of preservice teachers' ability to differentiate levels of thinking of Bloom's Taxonomy. In addition, research is needed to discover the ways preservice teachers implement higher order thinking skills in their practica. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Elementary Secondary Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A