Title

An Examination of the Changes in Science Teaching Orientations and Technology-Enhanced Tools for Student Learning in the Context of Professional Development

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-2014

Abstract

This research examines how science teaching orientations and beliefs about technology-enhanced tools change over time in professional development (PD). The primary data sources for this study came from learning journals of 8 eighth grade science teachers at the beginning and conclusion of a year of PD. Based on the analysis completed, Information Transmission (IT) and Struggling with Standards-Based Reform (SSBR) profiles were found at the beginning of the PD, while SSBR and Standards-Based Reform (SBR) profiles were identified at the conclusion of PD. All profiles exhibited Vision I beliefs about the goals and purposes for science education, while only the SBR profile exhibited Vision II goals and purposes for science teaching. The IT profile demonstrated naïve or unrevealed beliefs about the nature of science, while the SSBR and SBR profiles had more sophisticated beliefs in this area. The IT profile was grounded in more teacher-centered beliefs about science teaching and learning as the other two profiles revealed more student-centered beliefs. While no beliefs about technology-enhanced tools were found for the IT profile, these were found for the other two profiles. Our findings suggest promising implications for (a) Roberts' Vision II as a central support for reform efforts, (b) situating technology-enhanced tools within the beliefs about science teaching and learning dimension of science teaching orientations, and (c) revealing how teacher orientations develop as a result of PD.