Asia-Pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching, Volume 4, Issue 2, Article 11 (Dec., 2003)
Benny Hin Wai YUNG, Siu Ling WONG and Man Wai CHENG
A curriculum innovation: Focusing on student teachers' developing conceptions of good science teaching
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Why this curriculum innovation?

This curriculum innovation has been mounted in response to the issues raised in the University Grant Committee's Report on the Second Teaching and Learning Quality Process Review (TLQPR) of our institution. This project addresses, in particular, the issue of teaching effectiveness by undertaking a curriculum innovation of using classroom videos of exemplary science teaching to extend our student teachers' learning beyond the normal class contact hours. More importantly, the data gathered from students' assignments (in form of their personal reflections on their own development in the area of conceptions of 'good' science teaching and the factors that they think have influenced and change their conceptions) will constitute an important pool of data upon which we can evaluate the effectiveness of this innovation and to further refine it. On a longer term basis, this pool of data will also provide some baseline data for future longitudinal studies by following the same group of prospective teachers through the different stages of their professional development.

In short, this project will provide our team with valuable information upon which we can evaluate our program and to improve it so as to better prepare our student teachers for their future career. Though the context of study for this project is science teaching, its findings will have implications beyond this context. This is because many of the features of good science teaching are generic in nature; they are not unique to science teaching but are common to teaching in all other subjects. The effectiveness of the use of exemplary classroom teaching videos as a reflective tool for prospective teachers should also throw light on the applicability of such an intervention in the training of teachers in other subject areas. Lastly, this project is also a timely response in the light of recent education reforms which demand new types of teaching. Changes are clearly required in teachers' conceptions of teaching and learning. By engaging prospective teachers in commenting 'good' teaching, and probing into factors that have been shaping their conceptions, this project will contribute to the process of change.


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