Investigate the Reflective Evaluations of Prospective Teacher on STEM Education, Based on Their Experiences with Planning and Implementing STEM Activities

Volume 7 - Issue 4
Ali Bozkurt Melike Özyurt
Pages: 81-97 Download Count : 158 View Count: 451 DOI Number 10.17220/mojet.2019.04.006 Facebook Share on Google+ Save to Zotero Save to Mendeley

Abstract:


This study intends to investigate the reflective evaluations of prospective teacher on STEM education, based on their experiences with planning and implementing STEM activities. The research’s study group, designed qualitatively, is composed of 18 candidate teachers who graduated from the department of mathematics, 16 candidate teachers who graduated from the department of physics, 9 candidate teachers who graduated from the department of physics engineering and one teacher candidate from the department of textile engineering. STEM education programs carried out within the scope of the research lasted for 12 weeks, with four hours per week. Prior to the training programs, it was determined whether the teacher candidates had previous knowledge of STEM. After six weeks of training, study groups were formed which were composed of teacher candidates from different branches. Each team performed, with students, what they thought was an STEM activity in the classrooms. A structured interview was undertaken with the teams following completion of the activities. The content analysis method was used to analyze the data garnered from the interviews. The defining criteria for the STEM activities chosen within the scope of the study were their applicability, their compliance with STEM disciplines, their teaching potential and the features of the learning outcome (product). Teachers mentioned a few problems they encountered during the activities. It was found that the participants considered incorporating STEM activities into their teaching routine but that some had concerns about the preparation stage and the implementation process. In this context, it was established that the most remarkable concern regarding the preparation stage was the supply of materials and the need for preliminary preparation for the activities; while among the most frequently voiced concerns concerning the implementation stage were the time-consuming nature of the activities, efficient implementation of the STEM activities by the students, lack of cooperation between students, lack of active participation on the part of students and a lack of materials.

Keywords

  • STEM
  • STEM activities
  • reflective thinking
  • prospective teachers
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