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Middle school science teachers' personal growth and professional development : what do they mean?

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dc.contributor.advisor Lederman, Norman G.
dc.creator Holmes, Frank L.
dc.date.accessioned 2012-06-28T21:32:44Z
dc.date.available 2012-06-28T21:32:44Z
dc.date.copyright 2003-05-02
dc.date.issued 2003-05-02
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1957/30343
dc.description Graduation date: 2003 en_US
dc.description.abstract A teacher may say, "I have twenty years of experience," but just what does it mean? This study suggests explanations for the meaning of "Experience," not by looking at the number of years in a classroom, but at what teachers did in those years that could make the teaching experience equivalent to years of personal growth and development. Three Middle Level Science teachers' experiences were observed over two separate units of instruction. Teachers were engaged in conversations before, during and after every observation, such that their talk gave meaning to teaching. The teachers, early in their units, experienced tensions (stresses and anxieties) that affected their planning and implementation of teaching. The study determined that the teachers' learning experiences and personal growth were directly related to how they met the challenge of tensions. One teacher with very little science knowledge met the challenge of tensions in teaching by integrating her new science knowledge with her English and History knowledge and repertoire. She developed new practices that increased her energy and confidence in such a way that became self-sustaining experiences and growth. Two other teachers, despite science backgrounds, were less successful in meeting the challenge of tensions in teaching. Each found that the contents of the selected units required study and preparation, yet the teachers acquired information rather than truly learning the new subject matter. These teachers, in meeting the tensions of teaching, felt their energies wane, which reduced their dedication and effectiveness. As a result, neither teacher experienced personal growth. The negative experiences resulted in each teacher becoming more entrenched in a lecture mode of teaching to escape the tensions that existed. Learning new subject matter can produce tensions leading to experiences which affect teaching and potential for teacher growth. Incremental amounts of growth are possible, but only if a teacher responds positively to and meets the challenge of tensions in teaching, minute by minute, class by class. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Science teachers -- Attitudes en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Science teachers -- Job stress en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Middle school teachers -- Attitudes en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Middle school teachers -- Job stress en_US
dc.title Middle school science teachers' personal growth and professional development : what do they mean? en_US
dc.type Thesis/Dissertation en_US
dc.degree.name Doctor of Philosophy (Ph. D.) in Science Education en_US
dc.degree.level Doctoral en_US
dc.degree.discipline Science en_US
dc.degree.grantor Oregon State University en_US
dc.description.digitization File scanned at 300 ppi (Monochrome) using Capture Perfect 3.0.82 on a Canon DR-9080C in PDF format. CVista PdfCompressor 4.0 was used for pdf compression and textual OCR. en_US
dc.description.peerreview no en_us

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