Teaching methods enhancing grade nine students’ performance and attitudes towards biology

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http://hdl.handle.net/10138/230997

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Uitto , A & Kärnä , P 2014 , Teaching methods enhancing grade nine students’ performance and attitudes towards biology . in C P Constantinou , N Papadouris & A Hadjigeorgiou (eds) , E-Book Proceedings of the ESERA 2013 Conference: Science Education Research For Evidence-based Teaching and Coherence in Learning. Part 2 (co-ed. Jari Lavonen and Albert Zeyer) : Strand 2: Learning science: Cognitive, affective, and social aspects . European Science Education Research Association ESERA , Nicosia, Cyprus , pp. 315-321 , European Science Education Research Association Conference , NIcosia , Cyprus , 02/09/2013 . < https://www.esera.org/publications/esera-conference-proceedings/esera-2013#91-strand-2-learning-science-cognitive-affective-and-social-aspects >

Title: Teaching methods enhancing grade nine students’ performance and attitudes towards biology
Author: Uitto, Anna; Kärnä, Pirkko
Editor: Constantinou, Constantinos P.; Papadouris, Nicos; Hadjigeorgiou, Angela
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Teacher Education
Publisher: European Science Education Research Association ESERA
Date: 2014-04
Language: eng
Number of pages: 7
Belongs to series: E-Book Proceedings of the ESERA 2013 Conference: Science Education Research For Evidence-based Teaching and Coherence in Learning. Part 2 (co-ed. Jari Lavonen and Albert Zeyer) Strand 2: Learning science: Cognitive, affective, and social aspects
ISBN: 978-9963-700-77-6
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/230997
Abstract: The relationship between different teaching methods, lower secondary school students’ performance in biology and their attitudes to learning biology were studied. The survey data consisted of 2 989 ninth grade students responses from 97 comprehensive schools. Teacher-led instruction, individual work, interactive work, inquiry-based approach, visits outside the school, use of information and communications technology (ICT) and methods that enhanced students’ autonomy were found when Likert-scaled items measuring the use of different teaching methods were analysed with explorative factor analysis (EFA). Multiple choice questions and production assignments were used to measure students’ knowledge and cognitive skills. Attitude dimensions like the utility of biology, liking of biology as school subject and self-concept in learning of biology were also found with EFA. The EFA scores were analysed on the school level as the averages of 97 schools. Students’ school-specific average performance in biology correlated strongly only with inquirybased teaching method. Different attitude dimensions correlated more strongly with interactive work than with teacher-led instruction. Use of ICT correlated only slightly with the attitude dimensions of utility of biology and liking of biology as school subject. Visits outside the school did not correlate with any of the studied dimensions. The results indicate the importance of inquiry-based teaching approach in the lower secondary school biology. It is important for the students to make experimental investigations and observations, take part in biology demonstrations, ponder causes and effects and apply knowledge to everyday live. Student-centred, activating and participatory methods are essential to enhance students’ attitudes to learning biology in the Finnish lower secondary school.
Subject: 516 Educational sciences
biology education
performance
attitudes
Teaching Methods
inquirybased learning
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