Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, Third International Conference on Higher Education Advances

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Are pre-service Primary School teachers prepared to teach science by inquiry?
Javier Montero-Pau, Sandra P. Tierno, Paula Tuzon

Last modified: 08-06-2017


Inquiry-based science education (IBSE) focuses on the development of science process skills. This teaching methodology has been shown to be especially effective during Primary School as it allows children to explore and confront their own ideas about Nature. Also, a methodology based on process skills is coherent with the main purpose of this educational stage where children need to learn to do things. In order to implement a methodology based on science process skills Primary teachers need to know to use science process skills, and how to teach them. In this paper we address if Spanish pre-service teachers are able to implement IBSE. We focus on pre-service Primary School teachers and compare our results with in-service teachers and a random sample of non-teachers. We explore their level of knowledge about science process skills and if pre-service teachers know how to develop an inquiry-based learning sequence. An overview of the situation of science education and teaching of scientific skills among the degrees on Primary Education in Spain is also presented. Our results show that pre-service teachers have a lack of knowledge on science process skills and fail when they attempting to build a learning sequence based on inquiry.

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