Implementation of constructivist Life Sciences curriculum: a case study

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2010
Taneri, Pervin Oya
The purpose of this qualitative case study is threefold: (1) to examine the implementation of current Life Sciences curriculum in a selected primary school from the perspectives of teachers, students and administrators; (2) to investigate the degree to which teachers’, students’ and administrators’ perceptions were embedded in the classroom practices; and (3) to identify whether the implementation of the curriculum was conducive to principles of constructivist pedagogy. An elementary school was chosen as a single case in an outer district of Ankara. The participants of the study were the school administrator and 2 co-administrators, 4 classroom teachers and 87 students from different 2nd and 3rd grades classrooms. The data were collected through document analysis, observations in the Life Sciences classes, semi-structured interview with administrators, stimulated recall interview with teachers, and creative drama with students. Content analysis was used to analyze the data. The findings indicated that the suggested Life Sciences Curriculum was conducive to the principles of constructivist pedagogy in terms of its content; teaching and learning processes; instructional methods; assessment methods; and teachers’ and students’ roles. However, the acquisitions of the LSC were not conducive to the constructivist approach. The findings on the teachers’, students’ and administrators’ perceptions about the Life Sciences curriculum indicated that in Life Sciences lessons the teachers seemed to have a role of knowledge transmitter to a group of passive students. According to the findings, the most frequently used teaching methods were lecturing, question-answer and demonstration through using textbooks, workbooks, and white boards. In addition, the most frequently used assessment methods were essay and oral exams, classroom observations and self-assessment. Overall it can be concluded from the findings that although the suggested Life Sciences curriculum was prepared in line with the principles of constructivist pedagogy, the way it was implemented had some deficiencies regarding the actualization of goals suggested by a constructivist curriculum.

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Citation Formats
P. O. Taneri, “ Implementation of constructivist Life Sciences curriculum: a case study,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2010.