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Title:An exploratory qualitative study of science teachers’ instructional decision-making in relation to “coherence”
Author(s):Tosun, Gozde
Advisor(s):Dávila, Liv Thorstensson
Contributor(s):Hug, Barbara; Cromley, Jennifer
Department / Program:Curriculum and Instruction
Discipline:Curriculum and Instruction
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Abstract:Teachers’ use of strategies to build coherent instructional sequences is important in student learning (Roth et. al., 2011). Previous studies investigated teachers’ ability to design or distinguish coherent instructional sequences. However, teachers’ ability to distinguish coherent instructional sequences in relation to their academic and teaching background needs to be studied further. Therefore, I conducted a qualitative exploratory study with 21 K-12 teachers using self-reported questionnaires and follow-up interviews to investigate teachers’ understanding of coherence, if teachers prefer coherent instructional sequences and their justifications for their selections. According to the findings, nine of the participants preferred the coherent instructional sequence in all questions, nine of the participants preferred the coherent instructional sequences in one of two questions, and finally three of the participants preferred the incoherent version in all questions. Findings showed the participants teaching K-2 grades were less likely to prefer coherent instructional sequences. Analysis of the exemplary cases revealed teachers’ academic and teaching experiences may contribute to teachers having a consistent understanding of coherence. Findings have implications for supporting teachers’ academic and teaching background via professional development so that teachers can have a more consistent understanding of coherence. Only one of the participants mentioned connections between the steps of the instructional sequence as a criterion in his instructional decisions. However, for both questions, the majority of the participants preferred coherent instructional sequences (12 participants for the 13th question and 15 participants for the 15th question). Therefore, teachers may implicitly consider coherence as a criterion in their instructional decisions.
Issue Date:2018-12-12
Rights Information:Copyright 2018 Gozde Tosun
Date Available in IDEALS:2019-02-06
Date Deposited:2018-12

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