Perceptions of administrators, teachers, and students concerning the implementation of recommended reform in middle school science classrooms

Bonnie Lynn Payan, University of Texas at El Paso

Abstract

The responsibility of educators takes on its most obvious significance where the lives of teachers and their students intersect. The epistemology of teaching must encompass a pedagogy that goes far beyond the mechanics of teaching. It must combine generalizable principles of teaching, subject-specific instruction, sensitivity to the pervasive human qualities and potentials always involved (Fullan, 1993, pp. 49-50). If schools are to become the responsive, renewing institutions that they must, the teachers in them must be purposefully engaged in the renewal process (Goodlad, 1990, p. 25). ^ Educational reform has been talked and written about for decades; however, there is little evidence to document success in the reform of science education. National Science Foundation (NSF) and other professional organizations support the use of inquiry-based instruction in science classrooms. "Has the implementation of inquiry-based instruction influenced administrators', teachers', and students' perceptions in urban middle school science classrooms, after decades of Systemic Reform?" This study investigates this question. ^ The study involved an adaptation of multitiered teaching experiment designed by Kelly and Lesh (2000). The study involved surveys from seventh and eighth grade students, science teachers, principal, and science coordinator. Interviews were performed on science teachers, principal, and science coordinator. Observations were also performed on science teachers to ensure the implementation of inquiry-based instruction in science classrooms. All data collected was triangulated to determine if a consensus existed between science teachers', students', principals', and science coordinators' perceptions of inquiry-based instruction. The results of the study revealed that science teachers', students', principals', and science coordinators' perceptions of inquiry-based instruction exhibit inconsistency or do not support each other. ^

Subject Area

Education, Sciences|Education, Curriculum and Instruction

Recommended Citation

Payan, Bonnie Lynn, "Perceptions of administrators, teachers, and students concerning the implementation of recommended reform in middle school science classrooms" (2005). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI1430240.
http://digitalcommons.utep.edu/dissertations/AAI1430240

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