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Science Teaching Beliefs and Reported Approaches within a Research University: Perspectives from Faculty, Graduate Students, and Undergraduates
ARTICLE

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IJTLHE Volume 26, Number 2, ISSN 1812-9129

Abstract

This study explores and compares the perspectives of three populations (faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduates) toward science teaching in the College of Chemical and Life Sciences at a research-intensive university. In particular, we investigate the role of faculty professional development in reforming undergraduate science education. In Spring 2011, we collected data through an online survey of 71 faculty members, 99 graduate teaching assistants, and 288 undergraduates in their senior year. We used mixed mode data analysis to examine the perceived importance of skills for undergraduates as viewed by the three populations and the reported practices used by faculty and experienced by students. We found that across all three groups most of the respondents placed a high value on active learning and conceptual understanding, which is consistent with national recommendations. However, when comparing reported beliefs with reported practices, we found that faculty members do not always incorporate active learning techniques. In order to bridge this gap, we suggest providing faculty with professional development opportunities, moral support from peers, and instructional support from science education and instructional technology specialists. Our findings support this recommendation, as faculty who were in teaching-focused communities reported using innovative practices more than those not in communities.

Citation

Marbach-Ad, G., Ziemer, K.S., Orgler, M. & Thompson, K.V. (2014). Science Teaching Beliefs and Reported Approaches within a Research University: Perspectives from Faculty, Graduate Students, and Undergraduates. International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 26(2), 232-250. Retrieved July 1, 2022 from .

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