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Factors influencing the transformation of new teaching approaches from a programme of professional development to the classroom

[journal article]

Watson, Rod; Manning, Alex

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Abstract A programme of professional development was designed consisting of 20 hours of workshops plus in-school activities. The implementation of new pedagogy was supported by teachers bringing examples of their work in the classroom to the workshops for discussion and reflection. The purpose of this study is to explore factors that influenced what teachers took from the professional development programme and how they used it in their own classrooms. It focuses on how the teachers’ perceived needs were affected by the programme and how the implementation of new pedagogy was affected the level of in-school support. Data were collected to evaluate the expertise of the teachers early in the programme, their learning through the programme and factors that affected their learning. These data included tape-recordings of selected discussions during workshops, field notes of the workshops, classroom evidence collected by the teachers and portfolios constructed from it, and interviews with teachers after the programme had finished. The results indicate that success in learning from the programme was affected by two key factors: how teachers' perceptions of their needs interacted with the learning opportunities offered by the programme and how the level of in-school support affected the introduction of new pedagogy in the classroom. Unless both factors were positive learning from the professional development programme was variable.
Classification Curriculum, Teaching, Didactics; Teachers, Students, Pupils; Occupational Research, Occupational Sociology
Free Keywords science education; teacher development
Document language English
Publication Year 2008
Page/Pages p. 689-709
Journal International Journal of Science Education, 30 (2008) 5
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)