A longitudinal study of the influences of primary and secondary school, university and practicum on student teachers’ images of effective primary science practice
Skamp, KR & Mueller, A 2001, 'A longitudinal study of the influences of primary and secondary school, university and practicum on student teachers’ images of effective primary science practice', International Journal of Science Education, vol. 23, no. 3, pp. 227-245.
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What do student teachers believe have influenced their images of good primary science teaching? Has completion of an initial degree had an impact on their conceptions of effective practice? To determine answers to these questions twelve Canadian preservice primary teachers were interviewed on four occasions as they completed their postgraduate two year education degree. The findings from these interviews are compared with a similar longitudinal Australian study, where eight of the nine preservice teachers were school leavers. A pattern of influencing factors is reported, with the student teachers' own practice often superseding most other influences. The specific effect of field experience factors is described. Issues for teacher educators are raised about how to change conceptions of effective practice as well as questions about the impact of an initial degree on student teacher conceptions.