International Association of Educators   |  ISSN: 1554-5210

Volume 11 Issue 1 (February 2015)

Issue Information

Issue Information

pp. i - vi

Abstract

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Original articles

Hope, Rage and Inequality: A Critical Humanist Inclusive Education

Kevin Magill, & Arturo Rodriguez

pp. 6 - 27

Abstract

In this paper we examine challenges faced by students of color in an intervention program [Opportunity] in a socially stratified community on California’s Central Coast. The purpose of this paper is to name and discuss the problems students face: lack of support from the teaching community, the school staff and the administration of the parent district. We further identify challenges experienced by students and their teachers while highlighting strengths and weaknesses of educational programs and their reciprocal effects on participants. Finally, we seek to share a narrative overview of a teacher’s experience in creating the conditions for an inclusive education.

Keywords: critical pedagogy, inclusive education, social justice, neoliberalism, critical ethnography

The limits of dialogue among teachers from different national contexts

Jenna Min Shim

pp. 28 - 40

Abstract

In this study, the author investigates the dynamics of dialogue among teachers in different national contexts based on their responses to different cultural practices. Employing Pierre Bourdieu’s sociological theory of practice and his concept of habitus, the author shows that, as the teachers’ responses are not entirely context-specific, they are not autonomous either. In the final section, the author discusses the importance of attending to limits and barriers of dialogue across differences. Moreover, she further posits that recognizing the difficulties involved in productive dialogue is essential for achieving the transformative educational goals that promote a less dominating and less hierarchical approach. The assumptions implicit in this work are that the scholars and practitioners from diverse backgrounds bring unique perspectives to teaching and learning; and, therefore, productive dialogues among teachers from various backgrounds can open up a generative space that enables the active co-construction of new perspectives.

Keywords: Dialogue, intercultural communication, habitus, transformative educational goals

The Ethical Principle of Regard for People: Using Dewey’s Ideas in Schools

Douglas J. Simpson & D. Mike Sacken

pp. 41 - 58

Abstract

In this study we analyze Dewey’s writings and related literature in order to explain and utilize his ethical principle of regard for one’s self, others and social groups. His reflections about consequences, the common good, accountability and responsibility undergo scrutiny too. Moreover, we probe his understanding of affections, interest and action to elucidate their interconnectedness with ethical reasoning and moral development. Our reflective paradigm, constructed from Dewey’s  thoughts, serves as an analytic tool to assist in the examination of a problematic ethical situation and to demonstrate its usefulness for educators and others. The conclusions reached include the claim that Dewey’s principle of regard for people is a central feature of his reasoning process and encompasses a web of auxiliary principles which focus on raising questions about having regard for specific elements of life in particular contexts.

Keywords: John Dewey; Schools and Ethics; Educational Leadership; Ethical Science; Ethical Reasoning; Reflections, Affections and Actions

Pre-Service Teachers' Retrospective and Prospective Evaluations: Program, Self, and Teaching Profession

Mustafa Ulusoy

pp. 59 - 72

Abstract

This study aimed to investigate teacher candidates' retrospective and prospective evaluations about the classroom teacher education program, self, and the teaching profession. Observations, interviews,  focus group interviews, and surveys were used to collect data from the 240 subjects. Teacher candidates believed that the teaching profession is the best fit to their characters and the profession is the best job for females. The data analysis showed that 95% of the teacher candidates indicated at least two or more program related issues, and only 5% of them found the quality of the program  satisfactory. The results also revealed that pre-service teachers experience burnout problem, and 90% of the male subjects do not have a plan to stay in the teaching profession. It is recommended that the classroom teacher education department should offer teacher candidates more student-centered and constructivist teaching with adequate field experiences.

Keywords: Retrospective, prospective, evaluation, teaching profession, pre-service teachers

From Monologue to Dialogue: Interpreting Social Constructivism with a Bakhtinian Perspective

Rishabh Kumar Mishra

pp. 73 - 81

Abstract

At present it is a well established idea that the construction of knowledge is a process of co- construction of meanings through participation in socially negotiated and discursive activity. The pedagogic translation of this idea owes its root to a social constructivist perspective of development and learning. It envisages teaching-learning as a dialogic process. However it is identified that the idea of dialogue as used by proponents by social constructivist theorist is limited to its methodological implications as a pedagogic tool. The present paper argues that dialogue is not a pedagogic tool rather it is an ontological construct. Against this backdrop the paper argues that for developing a substantial theory of social constructivist pedagogy, Bakhtin’s ideas can be deployed. The paper elaborates the vistas of Bakhtin’s ideas of dialogue. Further with the help of this elaboration it tries to interpret the epistemological assumption of social constructivist approach to learning. This understanding will enable us to see the agency and the voices of individuals in teaching-learning process. Drawing upon the Bakhtinian perspective, the last section of the paper discusses tenets of dialogic pedagogy which will help us to transform the pervasive monologic discourse in to dialogic discourse.

Keywords: Bakhtin, social constructivism, dialogic pedagogy

Pre-service teachers’ conceptions on use of social media in social studies education

Nihat Gürel Kahveci

pp. 82 - 100

Abstract

The use of social media is tremendously increasing trend for personal use. At the same time, social media are penetrating to the educational settings as well. Thus purpose of this study is to investigate pre-service social studies teachers’ conceptions on use of social media in social  studies education; it is possible implications on social studies teacher education, social studies classroom and consequently citizenship education. Data were collected through open- ended interviews with 12 (6 female, 6 male) in a north western Turkish University. Designed as a qualitative study, data were analyzed inductively. Pre-service social studies  perceptions  regarding use of social media in social studies instruction were analyzed. According to data analysis, participants’ perceptions on use of social media differ both positive and negative. While some participants supported use of social media in social media instruction, some of them indicated some drawbacks to use it since possible negative effects on social studies and disadvantages for the students in social studies classrooms. Found negative and positive aspects and their probable implications to the social studies teacher education were discussed.

Keywords: Social Media; social studies; social studies teacher education; pre-service teachers

Confucius’ Analysis of the Human Nature of Irrationality and His Quest for Moral Education

Xing Jiawei

pp. 101 - 112

Abstract

This study uses mainly Confucian classic Lunyu to explore Confucius’ insightful thinking about humans’ strong innate nature of irrationality out of their physical needs. Irrationality causes interpersonal disturbances and chaos, and as such moral education is indispensable. Confucius advocated humanity, the principles of conscientiousness and charity, to help people’s instinct work in  a rational way by managing their irrational desires. To achieve rational behavior, Confucius taught his students Six Classics, namely Shijing (classic of poetry), Shujing (classic of history), Lijing (book of ritual), Yijing (classic of changes), Yuejing (classic of music) and Chunqiu (annals of spring and autumn). By mastering these classics, a person could inculcate in himself a rational character through self-discipline and self-indoctrination. This study reveals humans have great potentials to redirect their innate irrational behavior towards a rational state through moral education.

Keywords: Confucius, Lunyu, human nature, irrational, moral education

The Effect of Explicit-Reflective and Historical Approach on Preservice Elementary Teachers’ Views of Nature of Science

Canay Pekbay, & Serkan Yilmaz

pp. 113 - 131

Abstract

This study aims to explore the influence of nature of science (NOS) activities based on explicit- reflective and historical approach on preservice elementary teachers’ views of NOS aspects. Mixed- method approach including both qualitative and quantitative methods was used. The sample consisted of 83 preservice elementary teachers of a public university. Activities in experimental group were prepared as per explicit-reflective approach, whereas per historical approach in the other group. Views of NOS questionnaire was applied both as a pretest and posttest to explore students’ views about NOS aspects. During a 3-week application, worksheets were used and we benefited from observation checklists to control potential threats to internal validity. While content analysis method was used in qualitative analysis; frequency, percentage, Wilcoxon sign and Mann-Whitney tests were facilitated in quantitative part. Results indicated that students who experienced explicit-reflective instruction made statistically significant gains in their views of NOS aspects and accordingly some implications were presented.

Keywords: Nature of science, explicit-reflective approach, historical approach, preservice teachers

Service-Learning: Promise and Possibility in Post-Secondary Education

Susan Kalles, & Thomas G. Ryan

pp. 132 - 148

Abstract

Herein we identify and address promising practices, essential theories, and related cautions within service-learning. The argument that service-learning is an organized community service which is connected to curriculum in an effort to deepen learning around content was scrutinized and endorsed. We envisioned service-learning as more than a joint venture involving partnerships founded upon  good intentions, as the components that combine to create effective service-learning outcomes were mitigating essentials. Service-learning theory and praxis was advanced herein as added value within curriculum rather than a unique pedagogical approach to achieve transformational outcomes. We recommend service-learning as a pedagogical approach that is valued in its own right and not simply added on in times of program need.

Keywords: Service-Learning, Post-Secondary Education, praxis

Designing Adult Education Activities: A Case of Civic Education Programmes by National Commission for Civic Education in the Ashaiman Municipality in Ghana

Sally Adwoa Afriyie

pp. 149 - 162

Abstract

This article discusses the efficiency of the design of educational activities of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) in Ashaiman municipality in Ghana. Using a descriptive case study design, data was collected from seven (7) Community Based Groups in Ashaiman. The results of the study indicated that to a large extent, there was efficiency in terms of programmes’ relevance to context of participants, content of programme and processes adopted in programme design. However, there was little efficiency found in the area of developing and articulating objectives of the programme to participants.

Keywords: Adult education activities, civic education, programme design, efficiency

Interests of 5th through 10th Grade Students Regarding Enviromental Protection Issues

Sinan Erten

pp. 163 - 172

Abstract

This study investigates the extent of interest among middle and high school students in environmental protection issues along with the sources of their interests and factors that impact their interests, namely people with whom they interact and courses that they take related to the environment, science and technology. In addition, it is confirmed that the greater the grade and the age of the students, the more their interest towards the protection of the environment diminishes. According to these results, from the 7th grade onward, male students show a consistent decrease and see these issues as not a necessity. The female students’ interests in the issues decrease at a lesser rate than their male counterparts, but also consistently. The 9th grade is the period when both the male and female students lose most concern about the environment. In 10th grade, female students’ concern increases; however, males students’ remains at the same level and does not progress. In this study, these results are analyzed and examined. What are the sources of interest in the environment and the factors leading students to be more environmentally conscious? We attempt to answer these questions and determine what can be done in order to increase students’ concern with these issues through creating concrete suggestions and offering ways in which they can be applied in public schools and transferred to classes.

Keywords: Environmental protection, environmental consciousness, environmental education

The Exploration of Models Regarding E-learning Readiness: Reference Model Suggestions

Ömer Demir, & Halil Yurdugül

pp. 173 - 194

Abstract

Many studies have been conducted about readiness for e-learning, yet it is quite hard to decide which work of research from the literature to use in a specific context. Therefore, the aim of this study is to identify of which components models consist and for which stakeholders they were developed by investigating the most comprehensive and prevalent models in the related literature. Thus, the methods for both implementers and researchers were shown. A literature review was employed as the method  of the present study. Thirty models or measurement tools were explored in the scope of the study. The findings of the study show that competency in technology usage, access to technology, content, culture, human resources, finance, management and leadership, self-directed learning, motivation, and time management components of models pertaining to readiness for e-learning became prominent. Further findings and implications are discussed in the main text of the study.

Keywords: E-learning, e-learning readiness, readiness, literature review

Qualities of Pre-Service Social Studies Teachers who will Educate the Citizens of Future in Turkey

Handan Deveci

pp. 195 - 205

Abstract

With the incorporation of a constructivist approach into social studies curriculum to give direction to social life, people have started to wonder what kind of changes should be made in pre-service and in- service teacher training programs. The current study aims to determine the qualifications of social studies pre-service teachers who will contribute to the social studies education of the future and their expectations from teacher education. The study used the semi-structured interview method based on a qualitative research approach. The participants of the present study are 20 fourth-year students from the social studies teacher education program of the education faculty of a state university. In the analysis of the data, an inductive analysis technique was employed. Within the context of the study, the qualifications a social studies teacher should possess are explained in terms of personal characteristics, subject area knowledge, general knowledge, and professional knowledge. The expectations from social studies teacher education are discussed in terms of content, the teaching– learning process, evaluation and qualifications of teacher educators, and teacher appointments. In light of the present study’s findings, it can be argued that social studies teacher education needs to be improved and new regulations for teacher education programs established in line with the  constructivist theory put into effect in Turkey in 2005.

Keywords: Constructivist theory, social studies teacher, teacher education

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