ERG SES E 02, Pre-service Teachers and Education
A good teacher should possess three main knowledge domains namely: Pedagogical content knowledge (PCK), Pedagogical Knowledge (PK) and Content Knowledge (CK) (Grossman, 1990). As known, PCK development is an ongoing process and the first step of PCK development is pre-service teacher education level. School experience is an important component of teacher education programs since experiences pre-service teachers get during school placement influence their professional development (Zeichner, 2002; Richardson, 1996). Therefore, it is vital for pre-service teachers to complete school placement with positive experiences. However, research studies showed that there were many problems encountered by pre-service teachers during the school experience. For example, in the study of Boz and Boz (2006), pre-service teachers enrolled in the school experience course complained about making similar observations and similar activities. Brooks, Sikes and Husbands (1997) and Bullough and Gitlin (1991) state the importance of reflection on observations in order to get benefit from observations. Moreover, another problem reported by Boz and Boz (2006) was that at the cooperating schools pre-service teachers could not observe teaching methods taught in the university. The problem of not linking theory taught in universities with the practice at the schools was also stated by several research studies (Clifton, Madzuk & Roberts, 1994; Russell, 1988). Similarly, Yapıcı and Yapıcı (2004) also mentioned about problems regarding activities that pre-service conduct during school placement. They told that they could not make use of activities in the school experience course. Bullough and Gitlin (1991) stated that assignment of reflective coaching goals would be more beneficial for pre-service teachers rather than being assessed only by pre-established criteria in the school placement.
Obtaining pre-service teachers’ views about school experience course is useful to be aware of their problems and take cautious actions in order to make school experience more constructive for them. The aim of this study is to redesign the school experience course based on pre-service teachers’ conceptions utilizing pedagogical content knowledge construct. In this study, researchers utilized Magnusson, Krajcik and Borko (1999)’s PCK model to prepare school experience course activities such as teacher observation form, group discussions, CoRe (Content Representation). Magnusson et al. (1999)’s PCK model is composed of five components: science teaching orientation, knowledge of curricula, knowledge of learner, knowledge of instructional strategies, and knowledge of assessment. In this study, except science teaching orientations component, all components were used.
The research question of this study is: What are the views of pre-service chemistry teachers (PCTs) on problematic issues related to school experience course?
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