Advertisement

Research in Science Education

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 167–188 | Cite as

Practices and Innovations in Australian Science Teacher Education Programs

  • David Palmer
Article

Abstract

This paper reports part of a larger study which was designed to investigate current practices in initial teacher education programs in Australia. The main data collection was by telephone interviews, which were carried out with science education specialists and program coordinators at all institutions which offer primary teacher education or secondary science teacher education. The interviews focused on practices in relation to program structures, science content studies, science methods studies and links to science-related school projects or to science business/industry. A large number of innovative practices were described. In addition, several case studies were carried out, which focused on particular innovations. The study identified several aspects of science teacher education which were of concern.

Keywords

Science education Primary education Secondary education Teacher education 

References

  1. Adey, P. (1998). Preparing a profession. In Australian Council of Deans of Education (1998), Report of the National Standards and Guidelines for Initial Teacher Education Project. Canberra, ACT. Retrieved March 3, 2007, from http://www.acde.edu.au/assets/pdf/PreparingaProfession.pdf.
  2. Akerson, V., & Flanigan, J. (2000). Preparing preservice teachers to use an interdisciplinary approach to science and language arts instruction. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 11, 345–362.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Anderson, D., Lucas, K., Ginns, I., & Dierking, L. (2000). Development of knowledge about electricity and magnetism during a visit to a science museum and related post-visit activities. Science Education, 84, 658–679.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Anderson, R., & Mitchener, C. (1994). Research on science teacher education. In D. L. Gabel (Ed.), Handbook of research on science teaching and learning (pp. 3--44). New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  5. Bischoff, P. J., Hatch, D. D., & Watford, L. J. (1999). The state of readiness of initial level preservice middle grades science and mathematics teachers and its implications on teacher education programs. School Science and Mathematics, 99, 394–399.Google Scholar
  6. Burlbaw, L., Boroweic, J., & James, R. (2001). Team experiences for science and social studies preservice teachers. The Clearinghouse, 74, 116–117.Google Scholar
  7. Committee for the Review of Teaching and Teacher Education. (2003). Interim report: Attracting and retaining teachers of science, technology and mathematics. Department of Education, Science and Training. Retrieved March 6, 2007, from http://www.dest.gov.au/sectors/school_education/publications_resources/profiles/retaining_teachers_interim_report.htm.
  8. Corrigan, D., & Loughran, J. (1994). Teaching portfolios: Developing quality learning in preservice science teachers. Research in Science Education, 24, 60–67.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dekkers, J., & De Laeter, J. R. (1997). The changing nature of upper secondary school science subject enrolments. Australian Science Teachers Journal, 43, 35–41.Google Scholar
  10. Dobson, I. R., & Calderon, A. J. (1999). Trends in science education: Learning, teaching and outcomes 1989–1997. Melbourne, VIC: Monash University.Google Scholar
  11. Dori, Y., & Tal, R. (2000). Formal and informal collaborative projects: Engaging in industry with environmental awareness. Science Education, 84, 95–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. George, R. (2006). A cross-domain analysis of change in students’ attitudes towards science and attitudes about the utility of science. International Journal of Science Education, 28, 571–589.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Ginns, I., & Watters, J. (1999). Beginning elementary school teachers and the effective teaching of science. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 10, 287–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Graham, S., & Thornley, C. (2000). Connecting classrooms in preservice education: Conversations for learning. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 28, 235–245.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hannan, A., English, S., & Silver, H. (1999). Why innovate? Some preliminary findings from a research project on innovations in teaching and learning in higher education. Studies in Higher Education, 24, 279–289.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hawkey, R., & Clay, J. (1998). Expectations of secondary science: Realisation and retrospect. School Science Review, 79, 81–83.Google Scholar
  17. Herrington, A., Herrington, J., Sparrow, L., & Oliver, R. (1998). Learning to teach and assess mathematics using multimedia: A teacher development project. Journal of Mathematics Teacher Education, 1, 89–112.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hill, R., & Wicklein, R. (2000). Great expectations: Preparing technology education teachers for new roles and responsibilities. Journal of Industrial Teacher Education, 37, 6–21.Google Scholar
  19. Howey, K. (1996). Designing coherent and effective teacher education programs. In J. Sikula, T. Buttery, & E. Guyton (Eds.), Handbook of research on teacher education (2nd ed.) (pp. 143--170). New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  20. Kiggins, J. (2001, November). From project to program: The evolution of an alternative teacher education model. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE), Freemantle, WA.Google Scholar
  21. Laugksh, R. (2000). Scientific literacy: A conceptual overview. Science Education, 84, 71–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Lawrance, G. A., & Palmer, D. H. (2003). Clever teachers, clever sciences: Preparing teachers for the challenge of teaching science, mathematics and technology in 21st Century Australia. Australian Government, Department of Education, Science and Training. Retrieved March 3, 2007, from http://www.dest.gov.au/NR/rdonlyres/C571311D-04D5-4DB3-BA26-65051BD21FBE/812/03_06.pdf.
  23. Logan, M., & Skamp, K. (2004, July). Looking at students’ attitudes to science in late primary and junior secondary school. Paper presented at the Australasian Science Education Research Association conference, Armidale, N.S.W.Google Scholar
  24. Lovat, T. (1999). Searching for best practice in initial teacher education: Responding to the challenges. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 27, 119–126.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Lyons, T. (2006). The puzzle of falling enrolments in physics and chemistry courses: Putting some pieces together. Research in Science Education, 36, 285–311.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. McLoughlin, A., & Dana, T. (1999). Making science relevant: The experiences of prospective elementary school teachers in an innovative science content course. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 10, 69–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Mewborn, D. (2000). Meaningful integration of mathematics methods instruction and field experience. Action in Teacher Education, 21, 51–60.Google Scholar
  28. Miller, P. H., Blessing, J. S., & Schwartz, S. (2006). Gender differences in high school students’ views about science. International Journal of Science Education, 28, 363–381.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Moore, J. J., & Watson, S. B. (1999). Contributors to the decision of elementary education majors to choose science as an academic concentration. Journal of Elementary Science Education, 11, 37–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Prime Minister’s Science, Engineering and Innovation Councilo. (1999). Occasional Paper. Canberra, ACT: Australian Government Publishing Service.Google Scholar
  31. Rennie, L. J., Goodrum, D., & Hackling, M. (2001). Science teaching and learning in Australian schools: Results of a national study. Research in Science Education, 31, 455–498.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Schoon, K. J., & Boone, W. J. (1998). Self-efficacy and alternative conceptions of science of preservice elementary teachers. Science Education, 82, 553–568.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Silver, H. (1998). Innovations in teaching and learning in higher education: An annotated bibliography. University Of Plymouth, Exmouth. Retrieved July 1, 2002, from http://www.fae.plym.ac.uk/itlhe.html.
  34. Skamp, K. (1992). Science discipline knowledge for primary teachers. South Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 20, 121–136.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Smith, D. (2000). Content and pedagogical content knowledge for elementary science teacher educators: Knowing our students. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 11, 27–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Spall, K., Stanisstreet, M., Dickson, D., & Boyes, E. (2004). Development of school students’ constructions of biology and physics. International Journal of Science Education, 26, 787–803.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Speedy, G. W., Annice, C., & Fensham P. J. (1989). Discipline review of teacher education in mathematics and science. Department of Employment, Education and Training, Canberra, ACT: Australian Government Publishing Services.Google Scholar
  38. Tosun, T. (2000). The beliefs of preservice elementary teachers towards science and science teaching. School Science and Mathematics, 100, 374–379.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Trumper, R. (1998). The need for change in elementary-school teacher training: The force concept as an example. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 26, 7–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Watters, J. J., & Ginns, I. S. (2000). Developing motivation to teach elementary science: Effect of collaborative and authentic learning practices in pre-service education. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 11, 301–321.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Wright, J. (1998). Senate inquiry into the status of teachers. Australian Science Teachers Journal, 44, 6–7.Google Scholar
  42. Yates, S., & Goodrum, D. (1990). How confident are primary school teachers in teaching science? Research in Science Education, 20, 300–305.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of NewcastleCallaghanAustralia

Personalised recommendations