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Educ. Sci., Volume 8, Issue 3 (September 2018)

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Open AccessArticle Tutorials for Integrating CAD/CAM in Engineering Curricula
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 151; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030151 (registering DOI)
Received: 23 August 2018 / Revised: 13 September 2018 / Accepted: 14 September 2018 / Published: 19 September 2018
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Abstract
This article addresses the issue of educating engineering students with the knowledge and skills of Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing (CAD/CAM). In particular, three carefully designed tutorials—cutting tool offsetting, tool-path generation for freeform surfaces, and the integration of advanced machine tools (e.g., hexapod-based machine
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This article addresses the issue of educating engineering students with the knowledge and skills of Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing (CAD/CAM). In particular, three carefully designed tutorials—cutting tool offsetting, tool-path generation for freeform surfaces, and the integration of advanced machine tools (e.g., hexapod-based machine tools) with solid modeling—are described. The tutorials help students gain an in-depth understanding of how the CAD/CAM-relevant hardware devices and software packages work in real-life settings. At the same time, the tutorials help students achieve the following educational outcomes: (1) an ability to apply the knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering; (2) an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet the desired needs, (3) an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems; and (4) an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools that are necessary for engineering practice. The tutorials can be modified for incorporating other contemporary issues (e.g., additive manufacturing, reverse engineering, and sustainable manufacturing), which can be delved into as a natural extension of this study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Education and Technological / Professional Learning)
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Open AccessArticle A Community Based Participatory Approach to Training Young Adults to Design and Implement a Social Marketing Framed Lifestyle Intervention on Their College Campus
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 150; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030150 (registering DOI)
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 11 September 2018 / Accepted: 17 September 2018 / Published: 19 September 2018
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Abstract
Background: Using a Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) approach may increase the likelihood of relevance and acceptability of the designed intervention, especially on a college campus. Furthermore, recruiting and training college students to design a social marketing framed healthy lifestyle intervention for their peers
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Background: Using a Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) approach may increase the likelihood of relevance and acceptability of the designed intervention, especially on a college campus. Furthermore, recruiting and training college students to design a social marketing framed healthy lifestyle intervention for their peers will allow the intervention to be tailored to the needs of the campus. Objectives: To describe the process of online-course training college students to develop a campus-based, social marketing health promotion intervention. Methods: Four universities recruited current college students (18+ y.o.) to develop a social marketing and environmental intervention (SMEI), which was completed during a 16-week, online/in-person hybrid semester course. Researchers and Extension professionals trained students to design 24 weeks of intervention events that would be implemented the upcoming year. Results: Seventy-eight students enrolled in the study and social marketing and environmental intervention course among the four intervention states (Florida = 30, South Dakota = 8, Tennessee = 13, West Virginia = 27); students were predominately Caucasian (65.8%), females (84.0%), and sophomore status in college (64.9%). Throughout the semester, students assessed their campus environments, set priorities, and developed weekly events and resources needed to implement the intervention on their campuses. By the end of the semester, with researcher support, students had designed 24 weeks of intervention events (marketing, recruiting, and implementation) focusing on nutrition/food/diet, physical activity, stress management, sleep, and time management. These events and resources were catalogued into a digital toolkit of instructions and activities for each week of intervention events. Conclusion: Using a Community-Based Participatory Research approach with college students interested in health allows for the development of an intervention that stems from grass roots efforts and is tailored to the acceptability and needs of their peers. Full article
Open AccessArticle Supporting Students in Building and Using Models: Development on the Quality and Complexity Dimensions
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 149; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030149 (registering DOI)
Received: 30 June 2018 / Revised: 31 August 2018 / Accepted: 13 September 2018 / Published: 17 September 2018
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Abstract
Past research has identified elements underlying modeling as a core science and engineering practice, as well as dimensions along which students’ learn how to use models and how they perceive the nature of modeling. To extend these findings by a perspective on how
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Past research has identified elements underlying modeling as a core science and engineering practice, as well as dimensions along which students’ learn how to use models and how they perceive the nature of modeling. To extend these findings by a perspective on how modeling practice can be used in classrooms, we used design-based research to investigate how the modeling practice elements, i.e., construct, use, evaluate, and revise, were integrated in a middle school unit about water quality that included using an online modeling tool. We focus on N = 3 groups as cases to track and analyze 7th grade students’ modeling practice and metamodeling knowledge across the unit. Students constructed, used, evaluated, and revised their models based on data they collected and concepts they learned. Results indicate most students succeeded in constructing complex models using the modeling tool by consecutively adding and specifying variables and relationships. This is a positive finding compared to prior research on students’ metamodeling knowledge. Similar to these studies, we observed several basic metamodeling conceptions and generally less progress in this field than in students’ models. We discuss implications for applying modeling practice in classrooms and explain how students make use of the different modeling practice elements by developing their models in the complexity and quality dimensions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology Education)
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Open AccessArticle Reflect, Analyze, Act, Repeat: Creating Critical Consciousness through Critical Service-Learning at a Professional Development School
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 148; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030148
Received: 1 August 2018 / Revised: 1 September 2018 / Accepted: 13 September 2018 / Published: 15 September 2018
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Abstract
Universities engage students in traditional service-learning projects that often yield “good feelings”, even a savior mentality, but typically leave the root causes of social justice issues unexamined and untouched. In contrast to traditional service-learning, critical service-learning bridges this gap with an explicit focus
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Universities engage students in traditional service-learning projects that often yield “good feelings”, even a savior mentality, but typically leave the root causes of social justice issues unexamined and untouched. In contrast to traditional service-learning, critical service-learning bridges this gap with an explicit focus on justice and equity, situating scholars’ work with the community rather than for it. A public university in the southeast offered a doctoral course that focused on critical service-learning in the context of a professional development school partnership. Designed as an ethnographic multi-case study, each graduate student in the on-site course represents a case. Data collection included interviews, observations, written reflections, and artefacts. The analysis revealed that developing critical service-learning projects with educators—rather than for them—supported participants’ critical consciousness. Findings and discussion highlight that facilitating community-engaged scholarship through critical service-learning impacts graduate students and middle-grades educators’ research interests, work, and future directions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Middle Grades Education)
Open AccessArticle Expanding the Scope of Universal Design: Implications for Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 147; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030147
Received: 4 September 2018 / Revised: 10 September 2018 / Accepted: 10 September 2018 / Published: 12 September 2018
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Abstract
This article encourages postsecondary educators to expand the scope of applications of universal design and universal instructional design by exploring how principles of UD and UID can be applied to other social identities, and specifically to gender identity and sexual orientation. There are
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This article encourages postsecondary educators to expand the scope of applications of universal design and universal instructional design by exploring how principles of UD and UID can be applied to other social identities, and specifically to gender identity and sexual orientation. There are many parallels that can be drawn between students who are excluded because of their disability and students who are marginalized on the basis of nonconforming gender identity or sexual orientation. It is important that faculty and staff understand intersectionality and interdependence among social identities and consider what steps they can take to apply UID principles in ways that consider multiple aspects of identity in order to provide inclusive educational experiences for all students. Scenarios for further discussion are provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Universal Design for Inclusive Pedagogy)
Open AccessArticle The Representation of Religion in Religion Education: Notes from the South African Periphery
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 146; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030146
Received: 24 July 2018 / Revised: 4 September 2018 / Accepted: 6 September 2018 / Published: 11 September 2018
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Abstract
Scholars of Religion Education (RE) have promoted a non-confessional approach to the teaching of religions that explores and examines the religious history of humankind, with due attention paid to its complexity and plurality. In this promotion, the public representation of religion and its
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Scholars of Religion Education (RE) have promoted a non-confessional approach to the teaching of religions that explores and examines the religious history of humankind, with due attention paid to its complexity and plurality. In this promotion, the public representation of religion and its impact on RE has not received sufficient attention. An often hegemonic representation of religion constitutes an important part of religion in public life. Moreover, this article argues that this representation is a phenomenon shared by secular, secularizing, and deeply religious societies. It shows that a Western understanding of secularization has guided dominant RE visions and practices, informed by a particular mode of representation. As an illustration of how education in and representation of religion merges in RE, the article analyses the South African policy document for religion education. While the policy promotes RE as an educational practice, it also makes room for a representation of religion. This article urges that various forms of the representation of religion should be more carefully examined in other contexts, particularly by those who want to promote a non-confessional and pluralistic approach to RE. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Education and Religion in a Secular Age)
Open AccessArticle Construction and Evaluation of an Instrument to Measure Content Knowledge in Biology: The CK-IBI
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 145; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030145
Received: 13 July 2018 / Revised: 3 September 2018 / Accepted: 5 September 2018 / Published: 11 September 2018
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Abstract
The teaching process is well described as an interaction between teacher, student, and content. Thus, it seems obvious that teachers must know the content to help students to learn it. Instruments have been developed to measure teachers’ content knowledge (CK) in biology, but
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The teaching process is well described as an interaction between teacher, student, and content. Thus, it seems obvious that teachers must know the content to help students to learn it. Instruments have been developed to measure teachers’ content knowledge (CK) in biology, but few of them have been provided to the scientific community. Furthermore, most of them have a topic-specific approach, so there is a need for a more comprehensive measure. In efforts to meet this need we have developed an instrument called the CK in biology inventory (CK-IBI), which has a broader scope than previously published instruments and covers knowledge of five biological disciplines (i.e., ecology, evolution, genetics and microbiology, morphology, and physiology). More than 700 pre-service biology teachers were enrolled to participate in tests to assess the instrument’s objectivity, reliability, and validity in two cross-sectional evaluations. Item and scale analyses as well as validity checks indicate that the final version of the CK-IBI (37 items; Cronbach’s α = 0.83) can be scored objectively, is unidimensional, reliable, and validly measures pre-service biology teachers’ CK. As the instrument was used in a German context, it has been translated into English to enable its scrutiny and use by international communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology Education)
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Open AccessReview Early Childhood Science and Engineering: Engaging Platforms for Fostering Domain-General Learning Skills
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 144; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030144
Received: 15 May 2018 / Revised: 7 September 2018 / Accepted: 7 September 2018 / Published: 11 September 2018
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Abstract
Early childhood science and engineering education offer a prime context to foster approaches-to-learning (ATL) and executive functioning (EF) by eliciting children’s natural curiosity about the world, providing a unique opportunity to engage children in hands-on learning experiences that promote critical thinking, problem solving,
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Early childhood science and engineering education offer a prime context to foster approaches-to-learning (ATL) and executive functioning (EF) by eliciting children’s natural curiosity about the world, providing a unique opportunity to engage children in hands-on learning experiences that promote critical thinking, problem solving, collaboration, persistence, and other adaptive domain-general learning skills. Indeed, in any science experiment or engineering problem, children make observations, engage in collaborative conversations with teachers and peers, and think flexibly to come up with predictions or potential solutions to their problem. Inherent to science and engineering is the idea that one learns from initial failures within an iterative trial-and-error process where children practice risk-taking, persistence, tolerance for frustration, and sustaining focus. Unfortunately, science and engineering instruction is typically absent from early childhood classrooms, and particularly so in programs that serve children from low-income families. However, our early science and engineering intervention research shows teachers how to build science and engineering instruction into activities that are already happening in their classrooms, which boosts their confidence and removes some of the stigma around science and engineering. In this paper, we discuss the promise of research that uses early childhood science and engineering experiences as engaging, hands-on, interactive platforms to instill ATL and EF in young children living below the poverty line. We propose that early childhood science and engineering offer a central theme that captures children’s attention and allows for integrated instruction across domain-general (ATL, EF, and social–emotional) and domain-specific (e.g., language, literacy, mathematics, and science) content, allowing for contextualized experiences that make learning more meaningful and captivating for children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Early Childhood Education)
Open AccessArticle Walking the Talk: Enhancing Future Teachers’ Capacity to Embed Social-Emotional Learning in Middle Years Classrooms
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 143; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030143
Received: 1 August 2018 / Revised: 3 September 2018 / Accepted: 6 September 2018 / Published: 10 September 2018
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Abstract
Early adolescence marks a developmental period during which there is a window of opportunity to explicitly teach and make a significant difference in a young person’s development of social and emotional competencies (SECs). All students can benefit from the inclusion of SECs and
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Early adolescence marks a developmental period during which there is a window of opportunity to explicitly teach and make a significant difference in a young person’s development of social and emotional competencies (SECs). All students can benefit from the inclusion of SECs and failing to develop such SECs can result in poor outcomes in several domains including personal, social, and academic outcomes. Research on social and emotional programs for young adolescent learners has shown that a ‘skills and drills’ approach is far less effective than focusing on mind-sets and classroom climate. Although the role teachers play in explicitly teaching and supporting young adolescents’ SECs has been recognised, teachers have reported a lack of confidence in knowing what, and how to teach these skills. This paper reports on a teacher education course that embedded social and emotional skills into both coursework design and assessment expectations. Results drawn from an analysis of students’ responses to their main assessment task showed that pre-service teachers had a growing awareness of SECs and, in particular, were able to recognise the importance of focusing on the building of students’ SECs to support academic success across a broad range of curriculum areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Middle Grades Education)
Open AccessArticle Attitude towards Mobile Learning in English Language Education
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 142; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030142
Received: 22 April 2018 / Revised: 3 July 2018 / Accepted: 7 July 2018 / Published: 10 September 2018
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Abstract
Mobile devices, especially smart phones, are the most frequently used technological devices for daily routines. Mobile devices can be used for various purposes to meet different needs. Since education is a core requirement for human beings, smart phones are being integrated into education.
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Mobile devices, especially smart phones, are the most frequently used technological devices for daily routines. Mobile devices can be used for various purposes to meet different needs. Since education is a core requirement for human beings, smart phones are being integrated into education. However, it remains to be seen whether they have an impact on learning or not. Consequently, integration of these technologies, or “mobile learning”, has become a popular research study in the field of instructional technology. It is important to investigate the impact of smart phones in language education since students today use them frequently. This attitudinal study aims to investigate the attitude of students in higher education towards smart phone use in the context of foreign language learning. In particular, it gathers information about how smart phones are used for language learning. Participants of the study were 294 prep school students from a well-known university in Turkey. Descriptive study was selected as a research method and mixed-method was the research design for the study. The findings of the study showed that participants care about instant and easy access to information in language learning. In addition to drawing attention to the ease of information access, participants provided suggestions about future applications of smartphones in language learning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mobile Learning)
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Open AccessArticle Reflections on a Three-Year-Long Teacher-Centered, Participatory Action Research Experience on Teaching Chemical Bonding in a Swiss Vocational School
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 141; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030141
Received: 9 May 2018 / Revised: 16 August 2018 / Accepted: 3 September 2018 / Published: 10 September 2018
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Abstract
Chemistry is considered to be a difficult subject and chemistry education courses are not very popular among many students. Innovations in the curriculum and pedagogy may help to overcome difficulties in learning as well as motivational problems. Participatory action research (PAR) seems to
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Chemistry is considered to be a difficult subject and chemistry education courses are not very popular among many students. Innovations in the curriculum and pedagogy may help to overcome difficulties in learning as well as motivational problems. Participatory action research (PAR) seems to be a suitable approach for developing such an innovation for the chemistry classroom. This paper reflects on the adoption of a PAR model to teacher-centered action research. A project is discussed aiming at iteratively improving lessons on chemical bonding in a Swiss vocational school. The lesson was focusing on self-determined, autonomous learning in small groups in a multimedia-supported learning environment to foster student motivation for learning. The project is based on the cooperation of a chemistry teacher and a PAR expert group of chemistry teachers operating far away from the school. The cooperation was implemented by synchronous and asynchronous digital communication. The lessons have been cyclically developed over three consecutive years of teaching. The findings from the current study indicate that the implemented practice of action research helped to both improve the teacher’s pedagogical repertoire for his chemistry lessons and contributed to the teacher’s continuing professional development in terms of better understanding how student-centered his lessons should be. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovations and Contemporary Perspectives in Chemistry Education)
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Open AccessArticle How Christian Universities Respond to Extremism
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 140; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030140
Received: 25 July 2018 / Revised: 31 August 2018 / Accepted: 5 September 2018 / Published: 9 September 2018
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Abstract
This research article explores how two English universities with Anglican foundations responded to UK government requirements to counter radicalization on campus. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with student union representatives, senior staff in the universities responsible for implementing the legal requirements and also those
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This research article explores how two English universities with Anglican foundations responded to UK government requirements to counter radicalization on campus. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with student union representatives, senior staff in the universities responsible for implementing the legal requirements and also those with special responsibility for religion. Christian foundation education institutions are required to implement government policy in response to visible radical and religious extremism. The UK higher education context is post-Christian (with lower levels of religious adherence) and post-secular (with greater plurality and greater prominence of controversial religious-related issues). It presents challenges for Christian university identity when meeting the complex concerns about dangers to students, university independence and free speech, and common values and public accountability. The research found that key to universities being able to respond effectively to the challenge of legal compliance and student welfare, was staff expertise in religion, but they have doubts about their capacity to respond effectively, and both staff and student have fears about this policy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Education and Religion in a Secular Age)
Open AccessArticle An Adaptation Study of Measurement Properties for the Characteristics of Resilience in Sports Team Inventory
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 139; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030139
Received: 13 July 2018 / Revised: 17 August 2018 / Accepted: 20 August 2018 / Published: 6 September 2018
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Abstract
This multi-study paper reports the translation process and the validity and reliability analysis of the Characteristics of Resilience in Sports Teams Inventory (CREST) for the use of Turkish population. In three related studies, 414 team sports athletes from Turkey were sampled. We adopted
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This multi-study paper reports the translation process and the validity and reliability analysis of the Characteristics of Resilience in Sports Teams Inventory (CREST) for the use of Turkish population. In three related studies, 414 team sports athletes from Turkey were sampled. We adopted Beaton et al.’s (2000) methodology for the translation of self-report measures for cross-cultural adaption studies. The first study provided content validity for an initial item set as the preliminary study. The second study explored the factor analysis of the CREST structure. The third study explored re-testing of the explored structure in a different set of participants and criterion-related validity provided. The analysis of Study 1 revealed that the items were understood by the participants and ready for application for the general Turkish population. The exploratory factor analysis in the Study 2 revealed that the CREST had two sub-dimensions as it was in the original inventory. The Cronbach’s alpha values for the dimensions of demonstrating resilience characteristics and vulnerabilities shown under pressure were 0.94 and 0.90, respectively. The Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin value was 0.94. The confirmatory factor analysis in the third study showed that the structure of the inventory was confirmed in another sports context. Accordingly, the CREST is a valid and reliable tool for use by Turkish athletes and to measure team resilience that is one of the critical determinants of team performance. Further understanding of team resilience as a process can be gain by using the CREST, especially in future process-oriented research for team sports. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Valorization of Physical Education)
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Open AccessArticle Engaging Marginalized, “At-Risk” Middle-Level Students: A Focus on the Importance of a Sense of Belonging at School
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 138; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030138
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 2 September 2018 / Accepted: 4 September 2018 / Published: 6 September 2018
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Abstract
The philosophy of middle level education is to intentionally create a learning environment that supports every young adolescent. The literature around engagement points to the need for students to experience (among other requirements) a sense of belonging at school (SOBAS). When the need
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The philosophy of middle level education is to intentionally create a learning environment that supports every young adolescent. The literature around engagement points to the need for students to experience (among other requirements) a sense of belonging at school (SOBAS). When the need for belonging is not achieved there may be significant consequences, including an impact on intellectual performance, and hence, learning potential may not be achieved. For students with marginalized identities, an intensification of factors that create challenges places them at-risk of disengaging and their sense of belonging at school is more likely to be compromised. Nurturing SOBAS is positively associated with the retention of students who are at-risk of dropping out of, thereby being an aspirational goal of education. Methods: The findings of a systematic literature review related to young adolescents and the importance of SOBAS forms a focused literature base. We highlight findings from a study that explored the effectiveness of engagement strategies for marginalized students in one educational jurisdiction in Australia. Data in the form of a series of interviews and focus groups conducted with 25 students, 25 of their teachers, and 39 school leaders provides a rich data set for thematic content analysis. Inductive analysis and in vivo coding led to a framework that summarized each of the sub-group data sets to convey emergent themes. Results: Five themes related to SOBAS emerged from the data: (a) Relationships in School; (b) School Climate; (c) Pedagogical Practices; (d) Specific Programs and Activities; and (e) Other Issues, mainly variables such as family, mental health, trauma and poverty that impacted on a student’s SOBAS. Conclusion: The systematic literature review and the findings of the empirical study presented in this paper highlight aspects of SOBAS that can be formalized into a series of strategies to increase retention of marginalized students. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Middle Grades Education)
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Open AccessReview A Synoptic and Theoretical Account of Character (Digits and Capital Letters) Reversal in Writings by Typically Developing Children
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030137
Received: 15 June 2018 / Revised: 15 August 2018 / Accepted: 30 August 2018 / Published: 2 September 2018
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Abstract
Reversing characters (digits and letters) when writing, and complete mirror writing, raise one of the oldest and most mysterious questions in developmental and educational psychology: Why do five-year-old children write symbols (e.g., ꓱ for E) they have neither learnt nor seen? Attempts to
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Reversing characters (digits and letters) when writing, and complete mirror writing, raise one of the oldest and most mysterious questions in developmental and educational psychology: Why do five-year-old children write symbols (e.g., ꓱ for E) they have neither learnt nor seen? Attempts to draw up a complete explanatory theory of character reversal in writings by typically developing children were long hindered by the existence of a seemingly satisfactory explanation (left-hand writing), the failure to bring together research in neuropsychology and educational psychology, and the failure to consider the shape and structure of the characters. The present paper remedies this situation by describing a new, comprehensive theory based on recent neuropsychological findings and extensive empirical observations. The theory assumes that a character’s orientation, detected in the early visual processing area, is deleted (or made inaccessible) by the mirror generalization process during transfer to memory. Consequently, there is a period, usually around age five, during which children have representations of the characters’ shapes but not their orientations. Hence, when asked to write a character, children have to improvise its orientation, and the orientation they choose (implicitly, non-consciously) is often derived from the writing direction in their culture. Full article
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Open AccessComment What Kind of Economic Citizen? A Comment
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 136; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030136
Received: 25 July 2018 / Revised: 28 August 2018 / Accepted: 29 August 2018 / Published: 1 September 2018
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Abstract
Crowley and Swan (2018) proposed a categorisation of economic citizenship, in which they extend earlier work to include a new type, the discerning economic citizen. I argue that the discerning economic citizen is not a distinct type from the other three (the personally
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Crowley and Swan (2018) proposed a categorisation of economic citizenship, in which they extend earlier work to include a new type, the discerning economic citizen. I argue that the discerning economic citizen is not a distinct type from the other three (the personally responsible economic citizen, the participatory economic citizen, and the justice oriented economic citizen). The underlying idea of whether an economic citizen is discerning or not instead represents a different dimension across which the goals of economics education could be conceptualised. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Education)
Open AccessArticle Undergraduate Biology Students’ Teleological and Essentialist Misconceptions
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 135; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030135
Received: 13 July 2018 / Revised: 24 August 2018 / Accepted: 27 August 2018 / Published: 31 August 2018
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Abstract
Research in developmental psychology has shown that deeply-rooted, intuitive ways of thinking, such as design teleology and psychological essentialism, impact children’s scientific explanations about natural phenomena. Similarly, biology education researchers have found that students often hold inaccurate conceptions about natural phenomena, which often
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Research in developmental psychology has shown that deeply-rooted, intuitive ways of thinking, such as design teleology and psychological essentialism, impact children’s scientific explanations about natural phenomena. Similarly, biology education researchers have found that students often hold inaccurate conceptions about natural phenomena, which often relate to these intuitions. In order to further investigate the relation between students’ conceptions and intuitions, we conducted a study with 93 first year undergraduate students in biology. They were asked to express their level of agreement or disagreement with six misconception statements and to explain their choices in a two-tier test. Results showed a tendency for students to agree with teleological and essentialist misconceptions. However, no association was found between students’ teleological and essentialist conceptions as expressed in their agreement or disagreement with the various misconception statements. Moreover, we found evidence of a variable consistency across students’ answers depending on the misconception considered, which indicates that item features and contexts may have an effect on students’ answers. All together, these findings provide evidence for considerable persistence of teleological and essentialist misconceptions among students. We suggest future directions for thinking, studying, and analyzing students’ conceptions about biological phenomena. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology Education)
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Open AccessArticle Confident Parents for Easier Children: A Parental Self-Efficacy Program to Improve Young Children’s Behavior
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 134; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030134
Received: 20 June 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 28 August 2018 / Published: 31 August 2018
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Abstract
This study presents the effects on children’s behavior of Confident Parents, a focused parenting program targeting parental self-efficacy. This parenting program aims to improve child behavior through the enhancement of parental self-efficacy. Confident Parents was experimentally tested on a total sample of
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This study presents the effects on children’s behavior of Confident Parents, a focused parenting program targeting parental self-efficacy. This parenting program aims to improve child behavior through the enhancement of parental self-efficacy. Confident Parents was experimentally tested on a total sample of 80 parents of three-to-six-year-old preschool aged children with moderate to clinical levels of externalizing behavior. Thirty-seven parents participated in the program, and were compared with a waitlist control group (n = 43). The intervention consisted of eight weekly group sessions. Effect sizes were evaluated through both observational and parent-report measures on the child’s behavior, as well as self-reported parental self-efficacy at pretest, post-test, and a four-month follow-up. Through a multi-level analysis, predictors of the change in the child’s behavior were identified. The moderating effect of socio-economic risk and externalizing behavior at baseline were also included in the analysis. Results show that Confident Parents improved the child’s behavior, both reported by parents and, to a lesser extent, when observed in interaction with the parent. Children with higher levels of behavior difficulty benefited more while those with socio-economic risk benefited less from this program. These results illustrate that focusing a parenting program on improving self-efficacy is effective to reduce externalizing behavior in children. This underdeveloped treatment target is worthy of investigation in parenting intervention research. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Relationship between Free Time Satisfaction and Stress Levels of Elite-Level Student-Wrestlers
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030133
Received: 22 July 2018 / Revised: 23 August 2018 / Accepted: 25 August 2018 / Published: 31 August 2018
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Abstract
The purpose of this research was to examine the relationship between free time satisfaction and stress levels of elite level student wrestlers according to some demographic factors. The sample of the study consisted of 119 (85 male and 34 female) elite level student
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The purpose of this research was to examine the relationship between free time satisfaction and stress levels of elite level student wrestlers according to some demographic factors. The sample of the study consisted of 119 (85 male and 34 female) elite level student wrestlers who participated in the Wrestling National Team camp in 2018. As data collection tools, “Personal Information Form”, “Stress Scale in Working Life: SSWL”, and “Free Time Satisfaction Scale: FTSS” were used. In the analysis of the derived data, t-test, Mann-Whitney U, and Kruskal-Wallis were used, and Pearson Correlation test was applied to examine relations between study variables. There was no significant difference in the t-test results according to the “gender” variable (p > 0.05). There was a meaningful, low-level negative correlation between the “age” variable and social, aesthetic, sub-dimensions of stress scale. As a result, this study found that participants’ free time satisfaction levels were related to age; and stress levels were related to age, sport year, national team year, and income level. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Valorization of Physical Education)
Open AccessArticle Understanding Plant Nutrition—The Genesis of Students’ Conceptions and the Implications for Teaching Photosynthesis
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 132; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030132
Received: 30 June 2018 / Revised: 24 August 2018 / Accepted: 24 August 2018 / Published: 30 August 2018
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Abstract
Plant nutrition and photosynthesis is one of the most difficult issues teachers are confronted with in science classes. This can be due to alternative conceptions students’ hold, which are often profoundly contrary to their scientific counterparts. Consequently, fruitful learning environments should build on
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Plant nutrition and photosynthesis is one of the most difficult issues teachers are confronted with in science classes. This can be due to alternative conceptions students’ hold, which are often profoundly contrary to their scientific counterparts. Consequently, fruitful learning environments should build on learners’ alternative conceptions to initiate conceptual change towards a more scientific understanding. In this qualitative case study, high-school students’ pre-instructional conceptions about plant nutrition were identified empirically. Afterwards these students were exposed to the van-Helmont experiment in order to create a cognitive conflict. The learning processes and signs of conceptual change were identified using Qualitative Content Analysis. The results show that the van-Helmont experiment does not trigger conceptual change but reinforces students’ pre-instructional conceptions. Ultimately, a cognitive-linguistic analysis using Conceptual Metaphor Theory was conducted. Interestingly, underlying embodied conceptions and image schemas about human nutrition became evident. These thinking patterns were used metaphorically and, therefore, can be seen as the basis to understand plant nutrition. As a result, we propose a reverse approach of teaching photosynthesis and nutrition. Our Dissimilation-Before-Assimilation approach takes learners’ alternative conceptions and underlying image schemas into account in order to promote a fruitful learning of the concepts of plant nutrition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology Education)
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Open AccessArticle Using Restorative Practices to Prepare Teachers to Meet the Needs of Young Adolescents
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 131; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030131
Received: 22 July 2018 / Revised: 9 August 2018 / Accepted: 17 August 2018 / Published: 30 August 2018
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Abstract
Recent news on school safety and efforts to improve school climate underscores the importance of building positive student relationships and resolving conflict in our nation’s classrooms. Restorative practices are currently gaining credibility and popularity as a means to build classroom and peer relationships.
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Recent news on school safety and efforts to improve school climate underscores the importance of building positive student relationships and resolving conflict in our nation’s classrooms. Restorative practices are currently gaining credibility and popularity as a means to build classroom and peer relationships. Through a descriptive study, we explored how to model the restorative practice of community circles with teacher candidates to prepare them to use the approach with their future middle school students. We describe how a teacher educator engaged middle-level teacher candidates with community circles in an internship seminar for this purpose. This article illustrates the powerful effects restorative practices had on the teacher candidates’ peer relationships and the connections they made about teaching young adolescent students. We also provide a step-by-step guide for implementing this practice in middle level teacher education programs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Middle Grades Education)
Open AccessArticle Biology Education: The Value of Taking Student Concerns Seriously
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030130
Received: 9 July 2018 / Revised: 25 August 2018 / Accepted: 28 August 2018 / Published: 29 August 2018
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Abstract
This article examines the question of how biology courses can take student concerns more seriously than they often do. The focus is on school biology although the arguments apply to other biology courses too. The article begins by examining Michael Young’s argument that
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This article examines the question of how biology courses can take student concerns more seriously than they often do. The focus is on school biology although the arguments apply to other biology courses too. The article begins by examining Michael Young’s argument that schools should provide students with access to powerful knowledge—the sort of knowledge that they are unlikely to obtain from elsewhere—and compares this with John White’s argument that the curriculum should enable student flourishing, and that as part of this, there should be more student choice about what they study. It then discusses recent work on the benefits of independent research projects, in which students undertake authentic investigative work where they have considerable control over the work, and concludes that these generally motivate students and are a good source of learning for them. It goes on to examine what lessons might be learnt for school biology from the informal learning sector, such as Natural History Museums, where visitors have great autonomy with regard to what they study. Finally, it looks at the concept of ‘worldviews’ and argues that this provides another argument for taking student concerns seriously. The article concludes that taking student concerns seriously in school biology would facilitate human development, in particular, development towards greater student autonomy, and that this can be done in ways that have been tried and allow for high quality biology teaching and learning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology Education)
Open AccessArticle Development, Uptake, and Wider Applicability of the Yo-yo Strategy in Biology Education Research: A Reappraisal
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 129; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030129
Received: 16 July 2018 / Revised: 14 August 2018 / Accepted: 21 August 2018 / Published: 24 August 2018
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Abstract
Heredity is a biological phenomenon that manifests itself on different levels of biological organization. The yo-yo learning and teaching strategy, which draws on the hierarchy of life, has been developed to tackle the macro-micro problem and to foster coherent understanding of genetic phenomena.
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Heredity is a biological phenomenon that manifests itself on different levels of biological organization. The yo-yo learning and teaching strategy, which draws on the hierarchy of life, has been developed to tackle the macro-micro problem and to foster coherent understanding of genetic phenomena. Its wider applicability was suggested and since then yo-yo learning seems to be noticed in the biology education research community. The aim of this paper is to reappraise yo-yo thinking in biology education research based on its uptake and any well-considered adaptations by other researchers in the past fifteen years. Based on a literature search we identified research that explicitly and substantially build on the characteristics of yo-yo thinking. Seven questions guided the analysis of chosen cases focussing on how key concepts are matched to levels of biological organization, interrelated, and embedded in a pattern of explanatory reasoning. The analysis revealed that yo-yo thinking as a heuristic of systems thinking has been an inspiring idea to promote coherent conceptual understanding of various biological phenomena. Although, selective use has been made of the yo-yo strategy, the strategy was also further elaborated to include the molecular level. Its functioning as a meta-cognitive tool requires more specification, and teachers’ perceptions and experiences regarding yo-yo thinking should be addressed in future studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology Education)
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Open AccessArticle Transnational Civic Education and Emergent Bilinguals in a Dual Language Setting
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030128
Received: 8 June 2018 / Revised: 17 August 2018 / Accepted: 21 August 2018 / Published: 23 August 2018
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Abstract
Inclusion is a fundamental aspect of social studies education in general and democratic education in particular. Inclusion is especially important when we consider the possibilities for transnational civic culture and education. The theoretical framework of this study is based upon concepts of positionality,
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Inclusion is a fundamental aspect of social studies education in general and democratic education in particular. Inclusion is especially important when we consider the possibilities for transnational civic culture and education. The theoretical framework of this study is based upon concepts of positionality, identity, and belonging as they are related to student understanding of communities. A dual-language, third-grade classroom provided the site for this ethnographic study. Data included participant observations, interviews with the teacher and students, and artifacts of student work. Findings illustrate how the students in the study understood the complexity of their identities at a young age and how the teacher used culturally sustaining pedagogy to foster a third space where this understanding was encouraged. Full article
Open AccessArticle A Case Study on the Problems of Teacher Training System Based on the Opinions of Faculty Members, School Administrators, Teachers, and Unionists in North Cyprus
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030127
Received: 22 June 2018 / Revised: 30 July 2018 / Accepted: 6 August 2018 / Published: 22 August 2018
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Abstract
The aim of this study is to establish the problems in training teachers who will be working at primary schools in the North Cyprus based on the opinions of faculty members, school administrators, teachers, and unionists. Using the qualitative research approach, open-ended, semi-structured
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The aim of this study is to establish the problems in training teachers who will be working at primary schools in the North Cyprus based on the opinions of faculty members, school administrators, teachers, and unionists. Using the qualitative research approach, open-ended, semi-structured questions developed by the authors were directed to the participants in order to establish the “teacher training problems” and to obtain data. The study group of the research was made up of six primary school teachers of the Ministry of National Education of North Cyprus, six school principals, six unionists from the administrative board of the Cyprus Turkish Teachers Union, and six faculty members from universities in the North Cyprus, which makes up a total of 24 people. The data obtained were analyzed using the inductive content analysis technique. The research revealed problems such as the inadequacy of application lessons in the teacher training system in the North Cyprus, the existence of selecting teacher candidates without a control or criteria, inadequacy of the pedagogical formation education, existence of teacher candidates entitled to get into permanent teaching positions after working as temporary teachers for 36 months, problems of supervision during the years of candidacy, appointing teachers for political interests, a teacher training process becoming a business for profit, inadequacy of faculty members in developing themselves, and in-service trainings not being implemented in a planned manner. In conclusion, recommendations were developed for educational faculties and the Ministry of National Education towards solving the problems of the system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reform in Education)
Open AccessEssay Transversal Competences: Their Importance and Learning Processes by Higher Education Students
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030126
Received: 2 July 2018 / Revised: 9 August 2018 / Accepted: 20 August 2018 / Published: 22 August 2018
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Abstract
At a time when the labour market is blocked and simultaneously rapidly changing, with the emergence of new professional and scientific areas, the higher education mission becomes less indisputable and more indeterminate and challenging. This uncertainty was the leitmotiv for this essay, which
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At a time when the labour market is blocked and simultaneously rapidly changing, with the emergence of new professional and scientific areas, the higher education mission becomes less indisputable and more indeterminate and challenging. This uncertainty was the leitmotiv for this essay, which aims to discuss the importance of attaining transversal competences in higher education. To achieve this goal, a bibliographical research was carried out on the attention that is currently given by higher education institutions to this topic, how they respond to the need for increasingly more transversal training and how they develop a curriculum that meets these requirements. Thus, in methodological terms, a thorough research on the literature addressing the topic of transversal competences was carried out; subsequently, a document search was conducted and a qualitative review and analysis of the documents collected was performed to justify our stance. Our analysis allowed concluding that the context of indeterminacy regarding the future has variations, considering the geographical and political situation, the social context and the activity sector. Furthermore, attitudes, expectations and predispositions are also critical elements for the success of this process of transversal competences’ attainment. This latter factor is central in this process, as there is often a gap between students’ expectations regarding the competences they expect to attain in higher education and the proposals that frame their training at the micro, meso and macrosocial levels and which take the need to attain transversal competences in higher education for granted. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Education for Wonder
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030125
Received: 6 July 2018 / Revised: 14 August 2018 / Accepted: 17 August 2018 / Published: 21 August 2018
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Abstract
This article argues that rejuvenating a sense of wonder towards nature is essential to ecocentric education and to finding a sustainable future. It examines the barriers that block education for wonder and looks at the issues around education for wonder in the home,
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This article argues that rejuvenating a sense of wonder towards nature is essential to ecocentric education and to finding a sustainable future. It examines the barriers that block education for wonder and looks at the issues around education for wonder in the home, at school, at university, and in the community in general. It considers the scale of a natural area in terms of wonder education, and ways of teaching wonder in school that increase wonder rather than isolate the student from nature. It also considers the issue of an “education for sustainable development” influenced by anthropocentrism, in contrast to an environmental education where some scholars accept the intrinsic value of nature. It discusses the need to balance “facts” in education with ethics. The article concludes by summarizing the steps needed to re-educate for wonder. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecocentric Education)
Open AccessArticle Solving Environmental Problems Together? The Roles of Value Orientations and Trust in the State in Environmental Policy Support among Swedish Undergraduate Students
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030124
Received: 24 July 2018 / Revised: 16 August 2018 / Accepted: 17 August 2018 / Published: 21 August 2018
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Abstract
This paper explores whether value orientation (VO) and trust in the state (TIS) are linked to support for environmental intervention and steering among Swedish students in economics, law, and political science. Furthermore, we considered whether environmental personal norms mediate the link between VO
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This paper explores whether value orientation (VO) and trust in the state (TIS) are linked to support for environmental intervention and steering among Swedish students in economics, law, and political science. Furthermore, we considered whether environmental personal norms mediate the link between VO and support for environmental policy instruments and finally, whether TIS moderates the link between environmental personal norms and support for environmental policy instruments, testing this on a sample of over 800 Swedish students. We found a positive link between both a self-transcendence VO and TIS on environmental policy support; however, we cannot confirm a moderating effect of TIS on the relation between environmental personal norms and policy support. Furthermore, left-wing students displayed stronger support for environmental intervention. We conclude that more knowledge on programme-specific characteristics regarding environmental values, beliefs, and attitudes among freshman students can enhance sustainability teaching intended to develop the students’ critical and reflective capabilities. Full article
Open AccessArticle Effect of Participation in School Sports Teams on Middle School Students’ Engagement in School
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 123; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030123
Received: 8 August 2018 / Revised: 16 August 2018 / Accepted: 17 August 2018 / Published: 20 August 2018
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Abstract
The aim of this study is to determine the effect of participation in school sports teams of students studying in middle school on their levels of school engagement. The relational screening model was used in the study. The study group of the research
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The aim of this study is to determine the effect of participation in school sports teams of students studying in middle school on their levels of school engagement. The relational screening model was used in the study. The study group of the research consisted of a total of 610 students selected by the random sampling method and studying at middle school level (fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth grades). For analysis of the data obtained from the participants by means of the ‘School Engagement Scale’, descriptive statistics were calculated and interpreted with independent samples t-test and one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). Based on the research findings, the mean level of school engagement of the participants was found to be 3.62 ± 0.51. In terms of the gender variable, a significant difference in favour of female participants was found. With respect to another variable, that of state of participation in school teams, it was determined that as length of participation in school teams increased, mean level of school engagement of the participants also increased. In conclusion, it was determined that participation in school teams made a positive contribution to students’ engagement in school, and it is recommended that in order to further increase students’ level of school engagement, measures should be taken to ensure students’ participation in school teams. Full article
Open AccessArticle The Relation between Prospective Teachers’ Attitudes towards Uncertainty and Motivation in Teaching
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 122; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030122
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 12 August 2018 / Accepted: 14 August 2018 / Published: 17 August 2018
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Abstract
The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between prospective teachers’ attitudes towards uncertainty and their motivation in teaching. The research was conducted with a correlational model. In this study, exploratory and predictive correlation techniques were used. The study group was
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The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between prospective teachers’ attitudes towards uncertainty and their motivation in teaching. The research was conducted with a correlational model. In this study, exploratory and predictive correlation techniques were used. The study group was comprised of 396 fourth grade students studying at the Inonu University Faculty of Education in the academic year of 2015–2016. A simple linear regression analysis and Pearson Product Moment analysis were conducted on the obtained data. A moderate negative and significant relationship was found between prospective teachers’ attitudes towards uncertainty and their motivation in teaching, and the attitude towards to uncertainty was observed to be a significant predictor of motivation in teaching. In addition to this, a moderate negative significant relationship was found between prospective teachers’ attitudes towards uncertainty and their intrinsic and extrinsic motivation, and the attitudes towards to uncertainty was observed to be a significant predictor of the intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Full article
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