ERG SES B 08, Parallel Session B 08
The aim of education systems is to train up manpower having the qualities required of the age. In order for education systems to fulfill this function, it is necessary for each of the components constituting the system to be in harmony with each other. One of these components is teachers, because success in teaching is primarily dependent on the quality of the teacher (Savci, 1993; Seferoglu, 2001). As a profession, teaching requires field knowledge, general knowledge, pedagogical knowledge and skill. Within the framework of pedagogical knowledge, teachers are expected to have a sufficient level of measurement and assessment knowledge and skill (Daniel and King, 1998; Mertler, 1999; Zhang and Burry-Stock, 2003). However, studies, both national and international, indicate that teachers have been facing problems in relation to activities of measurement and assessment (Daniel and King, 1998; Cakan, 2004; Gelbal, 2007;Ulutas, 2003). These findings necessitate training prospective teachers in a way to have them equipped with the capacity to effectively apply measurement and assessment approaches. Due to the insufficient emphasis on measurement and assessment in teacher training programs, it is accepted that the prospective teachers who graduate from these programs have important shortcomings in relation to the techniques used for getting to know the students, measurement and evaluation (Gelbal and Kellecioglu, 2007). For this reason, developments in the field of measurement and assessment foreground the use of not only the classical measurement tools but also alternative assessment in student success (Dochy, 2001; Shepard, 2000). Among the alternative assessment approaches, portfolio, project, performance task, rubrics, self and peer evaluation attract notice. In order to have meaningful learning, students of biology teaching need to use higher order thinking skills rather than knowledge based on recalling. This necessity brings up the measurement and assessment of higher order thinking skills as well. Sometimes, tests used in biology teaching may gives very little information on how effectively the students use the knowledge they have. This situation puts forth the importance of using alternative assessment approaches in biology teaching. The use of using classical measurement tools and alternative assessment approaches to achieve their purpose depends largely on the knowledge and experience of teachers in this topic. As the prospective teachers are the future applicators of biology teaching program in schools, knowing how proficient they regard themselves in terms of the measurement and assessment activities, would provide clues about the problems they face and also about the precautions the related institutions may take. In this respect, it is a very important necessity to determine the proficiencies of prospective biology teachers, who will play an active role in the application of biology teaching programs in schools, on measurement and assessment. The aim of this study is to determine how competent they perceive themselves in terms of the proficiencies listed within the context of “Observing and Evaluating Learning and Development” which was defined by the Ministry of Education within the framework of Teaching Profession General Proficiencies, and also to determine to what extend they possess these proficiency signifiers.
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