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Developing attitude to science education scales for use with primary teachers

By Anthony Pell and Tina Jarvis

Abstract

This paper reports the development of attitudes to science and science teaching scales for primary teachers. The investigation is part of a project intended to improve pupil achievement in science in 16 English city schools. The baseline performance of the attitude scales is reported with 76 teachers, half of whom formed a control group. The 49-item attitudes to science teaching scale of Cronbach-alpha reliability 0.96 has sub-scales of practical science teaching and professionalism. The project teachers were less confident of teaching science than teaching the English language. They particularly lacked confidence in teaching physical processes, 'guided discovery' investigations and planning lessons within the National Curriculum as required in English schools. Attitude findings suggest appropriately focused in-service might be successful. Being a promoted teacher with some subject or administrative responsibility tends to lower certain attitudes to effective science teaching. This 'regression upon promotion effect' is speculated to be a consequence of the demands of the English school National Curriculum

Year: 2003
DOI identifier: 10.1080/0950069022000017289
OAI identifier: oai:lra.le.ac.uk:2381/1037
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