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Investigation of Pre-service Teachers’ Reasoning Abilities and Learning Approaches in Inquiry Based Learning Environment

2008-03-30
Özgelen, Sinan
Hacıeminoğlu, Esma
Yılmaz Tüzün, Özgül
The purposes of this study were to investigate the effect of inquiry based science laboratory course on pre-service teachers’ (PTs) reasoning abilities and learning approaches, the relationship between PTs’ learning approaches andreasoning abilities, and how well do the learning approach and reasoning ability predict PTs’ achievement. The sample of this study consisted of 83 pre-service elementary science PTs and elementary mathematics PTs, minoring in science education. Data were collected from Science Laboratory Application Course (SLAC). This course is only the science laboratory courses taken at education faculty. Inquiry based teaching (IBT) approach was implemented. The course instruction was designed to help PTs understand scientific concepts by engaging science activities rather than just following cook book instruction. According t-test results for reasoning ability scores, PTs’ pre-post test scores revealed that using IBT method in the lab course significantly increased the PTs’ reasoning abilities. Also, inquiry approach did not increase the PTs’ learning approaches. Chi square analysis revealed that the probability of participants being accepted as formal level was about 11.4 times more likely when the participants were doing meaningful learning as opposed to rote learning. Multiple regression analysis revealed that students’ achievement was correlated with students reasoning abilities.