Understanding teachers' conceptions of classroom inquiry with a teaching scenario survey instrument

  • Kang N
  • Orgill M
  • Crippen K
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A survey instrument using everyday teaching scenarios was developed to measure teacher conceptions of inquiry. Validity of the instrument was established by comparing responses for a group of secondary teachers to narrative writing and group discussion. Participating teachers used only three of the five essential features of inquiry detailed in the standards documents (NRC 2000) when expressing their ideas of classroom inquiry. The features of ‘evaluating explanations in connection with scientific knowledge’ and ‘communicating explanations’ were rarely mentioned. These missing components indicate a gap between the teachers’ conceptions of inquiry and the ideals of the reform movement.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Classroom inquiry
  • Evaluation instrument
  • Secondary education
  • Teacher beliefs

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