01 SES 06 C, Focussing on Students
Parallel Paper Session
Self-efficacy is “people’s judgments of their capabilities to organize and execute courses of action required attaining types of performances” (Bandura, 1986, p. 391). Self-efficacy beliefs affect individuals’ choice, effort and persistence to pursue on a task. Self-efficacious individuals are likely to work harder on a task and when they encounter difficulties they persist on a task longer than those who have lower self-efficacy beliefs. Teachers who do not have confidence about their capabilities to improve student learning are tend to keep their attention on negative aspects of their classrooms and more likely to avoid accomplishing to teach (Pintrich & Schunk, 2002). Then, if teachers succeed to enhance their self-efficacy beliefs their performance may also increase (Ozdemir et al., 2009). On the other hand, teachers’ key roles in advancing environmental education efforts have been pronounced since 1980’s and insufficient teacher preparation has been identified as one factor in the weakness of environmental education efforts and environmental education curriculum (World Commission on the Environment and Development, 1987, Knapp, 2000, UNESCO, 1997). Therefore, adequate environmental education preparation of students in teacher-training programs is essential for helping future teachers design and implement effective environmental education curriculum (Cutter-Mackenzie and Smith, 2003; Mc Keown-Ice, 2000; Spork, 1992). However, teachers may not be able to meet these expectations if they are not self-efficacious individuals toward environmental education. Turkey, as a candidate nation to join the European Union, is working to transform aspects of its education system in order to align them more closely with European standards. Within this framework, Turkey introduced reform in teacher education in the 1990s through the National Education Development Project. One component of the project was the improvement of pre-service teacher education on the environmental issues. Thus the Ministry added an Environmental Science course to the teacher education programme in Turkey. The course has been taught since 2 years and the content changes according to the lecturer. Thus, it is necessary to measure and evaluate the outcomes of this attempt on several aspects, such as on the pre-service teachers’ efficacy in teaching environmental issues. Therefore, this research attempts to offer some additional light on environmental education attempts in Turkey, by means of measuring the impacts of the Environmental Science course on pre-service teachers’ self efficacy in teaching environmental issues. Thus, the research design includes measuring pre-service teachers self efficacy before and after taking the Environmental Science course. Furthermore, since the measured self efficacy of the pre-service teachers will base mainly on the content of the given course, the course content has also been considered while evaluating and discussing the results. In relation with this purpose, the research presented here addresses the following questions:
1. How self efficacy beliefs of pre-service elementary teachers’ toward environmental education changes before and after taking an Environmental Science course?
2. Is there any significant relationship between pre-service elementary teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs toward environmental education and gender?
Bandura, A. (1986). Social foundations of thought and action: A social cognitive theory. Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Prantice-Hall. Cutter-Mackenzie, A., Smith, R., 2003. Ecological literacy: the ‘missing paradigm’ in environmental education (part one). Environmental Education Research 9 (4), 497–524. Knapp, D., 2000. The Thessaloniki declaration: a wake-up call for environmental education? Journal of Environmental Education 31, 32–39 Mc Keown-Ice, R., 2000. Environmental education in the United States: a survey of pre-service teacher education programs. Journal of Environmental Education 32, 4–11. Ozdemir, A., Aydin, N., & Akar-Vural, R. (2009). A scale development study on self-efficacy beliefs through environmental education. Dokuz Eylül Üniversitesi Buca Eğitim Fakültesi Dergisi, 26, 1-8. Pintrich, P.R., & Schunk, D.H. (2002). Motivation in Education: Theory, Research and Applications. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall Merrill. Spork, H., 1992. Environmental education: a mismatch between theory and practice. Australian Journal of Environmental Education 8, 147–166. Tuncer, G., C. Tekkaya, S. Sungur, J. Cakiroglu, H. Ertepinar, M. Kaplowitz, “Assessing pre-service teachers’ environmental literacy in Turkey as a mean to develop teacher education programs,” International Journal of Educational Development, 29, 426-436 (2009). UNESCO, 1997. Thessaloniki Declaration. World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987. Our Common Future. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
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