This paper reports on the STEPS project which addressed international concerns about primary teachers' lack of confidence to teach science, and on-going questions about the effectiveness of teacher education. The five universities involved had each independently established a science education program incorporating school-based partnerships between the university and local schools to enable primary pre-service teachers (PSTs) to teach science. The diversity of the programs enabled an examination of the relevant literature underpinning the approaches and comparison of data from participants to identify key features and success factors for establishing and maintaining working relationships with schools. This preliminary analysis of learning from STEPS uses case studies and feedback from PSTs who participated. These findings indicate that authentic teaching experiences build the confidence of PSTs to teach science. Ultimately, the project will develop an Interpretive Framework which will articulate the characteristics of partnerships to be validated through feedback from other science educators from Australia and overseas.
Field of Research
130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
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