Fostering self-reflection and meaningful learning: Earth science professional development for middle school science teachers

Julie A. Monet, Eugenia Etkina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper describes the analysis of teachers' journal reflections during an inquiry-based professional development program. As a part of their learning experience, participants reflected on what they learned and how they learned. Progress of subject matter and pedagogical content knowledge was assessed though surveys and pre- and posttests. We found that teachers have difficulties reflecting on their learning and posing meaningful questions. The teachers who could describe how they reasoned from evidence to understand a concept had the highest learning gains. In contrast those teachers who seldom or never described learning a concept by reasoning from evidence showed the smallest learning gains. This analysis suggests that learning to reflect on one's learning should be an integral part of teachers' professional development experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)455-475
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Science Teacher Education
Volume19
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education

Keywords

  • Earth science
  • Meaningful learning
  • Meta-cognition
  • Middle school
  • Professional development
  • Science teaching
  • Self reflection

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