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pp. 359-387 | DOI: 10.12973/ijese.2016.324a | Article Number: ijese.2016.009
Published Online: March 10, 2016
Article Views: 1842 | Article Download: 1106
The purpose of the study was to investigate the impact of Science, Technology, Society (STS) issue oriented science methods course on pre-service teachers' views and perceptions toward STS issues and instruction as well as their levels of environmental literacy. The STS issue oriented curriculum was designed to help pre-service teachers improve their knowledge, perceptions, and attitudes toward STS issues. A mixed methodology design was utilized in this study with a sample of 93 elementary pre-service teachers. The quantitative segment of the study employed a quasi-experimental pretest-posttest design incorporating a treatment and a comparison group. The qualitative component included both the observation data and interview data collected shortly after the completion of the pre and post-surveys. The quantitative and qualitative data sets were used in conjunction to present a comparative case study where the outcomes for the two groups (comparison and treatment) were compared. The sample consisted of four sections of an elementary science methods class, two of which received the experimental treatment while the other two sections received the comparison treatment for 16 weeks. A pretest on variables of environmental literacy, STS views, and STS teaching views was administered to all subjects prior to the treatments to establish the equivalency of the two groups. A posttest was also administered to all subjects at the end of the semester. The experimental group outperformed the comparison group on all the aforementioned variables and a statistical significant difference was attained at the .05 level with respect to each variable. Furthermore, the results of pre and post interview data collected on environmental literacy, STS views, and STS teaching views further corroborated the quantitative data. The findings suggest that the STS issue focused program positively influenced pre-service teachers' level of environmental literacy as well as their perceptions and attitudes toward STS issues and instruction of such issues to elementary students. The findings of this study revealed that pre-service teachers gain considerably from an STS framework for teaching and learning.
Keywords: environmental education, environmental literacy, elementary preservice teachers, teachers' belief, STS education
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