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The Effect of University Science Faculty Beliefs on Teaching Practices across Contexts

Abstract

"As a central component in efforts toward increasing student interest in scientific studies and careers, the milieu of university science teaching is an important current focus of study; teaching reform efforts that include the level of higher education are of key importance if secondary and elementary science teachers, products of the higher education system, are expected to implement such reforms in their own teaching. The goals of this research were to describe the extent to which university science instructors employ student-centered, inquiry-oriented teaching methods in their courses for undergraduates and in-service teachers, and investigate what factors impact their ability or willingness to implement such reforms in these differing contexts. We addressed these questions using a mixed methods approach which resulted in a multiple case study interpretive study. Patterns in the instructors' responses provided insight into individual attributes and institutional structures that are favorable and unfavorable toward effective science teaching at the higher education level."

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