Teacher A prepared a lot of materials and tried his best to explain in as much detail as possible. He thinks the more he can tell the students, the more students can learn. Each question has a fixed answer and as soon as students make mistakes, he moves on to other students.
Teacher B heard about Activity Learning and he decided the best way to teach is to play games and inteact with his students. He accepted all students’ responses because he wanted to show the students he is a kind teacher.
Teacher C thinks about what is important in the subject area as well as what students would be interested to know and how she can link concepts with experience when preparing the materials. She varied her activities from lecturing, question asking, to group work. She was interested to find out what students know and do not know and why they cannot understand. The questions were of different types and she listened to student responses with interest to find out what they were thinking.
Teacher D, in her science class asked the class to look at the diagram of a microscope in the textbook. She then explained and wrote notes about these different parts of a microscope. After that, she asked the students to complete the exercise in the textbook matching the names of the major components of a microscope with their functions.
- Which of the teaching practices do you like more? Why?
- Which of the teaching practices resemble your own teaching? What particular characteristics do they have in common?
(Cases adapted from HKU, PDGE Course "Classroom learning and student development' material)
Researchers have found that teaching practices are often underpinned by a set of inter-related beliefs and values, which is generally known as 'conception of teaching'. There is also keen interest in understanding how teachers' conception of teaching affects their teaching as such influences the quality of students' learning.
“Conception of teaching” is an umbrella term that refers to a teacher's values, attitudes, beliefs and intentions towards teaching.
Types of conception of teaching:
Kember (1997) reviewed studies that examined teachers' conceptions of teaching, and summarized the major categories. In general, there are two contrasting conceptions, the teacher-centred and student-centred. In-between these two poles, there is an intermediate kind of conception. We will explore each of these three forms of conception of teaching in turn.
In-between the two ends of conception of teaching, there is one in the middle that bears some of the characteristics from each pole:
Conceptions of teaching affect an arrays of teachers' choices in practice, which include, teaching method, design and choice of learning tasks, design and choice of assessment tasks, assessment demands and workload of a subject/course. All of these can influence students’ ways of studying and the quality of learning.
(Extracted from Kember (1997), A reconceptualization of the research to university academics' conception of teaching, Learning and Instruction, 7, 255-275.)
Researchers found that learning behaviors, in like terms as coneption of teaching, are often underpinned by a set of inter-related beliefs and values, which is generally known as 'conception of learning'. There is also keen interest in understanding how students' conception of learning affects their studying and ultimately their quality of students' learning.
Conception of learning is an umbrella term that refers to one's values, attitude, beliefs and intention towards learning.
Conception of learning, like conception of teaching, affects an arrays of students' learning behavior, which includes, motivation to study, approach to study, perception of workload and how they understanding what constitutes knowledge and knowing. And all of these relate to quality of learning.