Journal of Science Teacher Education

, Volume 24, Issue 4, pp 745–762 | Cite as

Preservice Teachers’ Images of Scientists: Do Prior Science Experiences Make a Difference?

Article

Abstract

This article presents the results of a mixed methods study that used the Draw-a-Scientist Test as a visual tool for exploring preservice teachers’ beliefs about scientists. A questionnaire was also administered to 165 students who were enrolled in elementary (K–8) and secondary (8–12) science methods courses. Taken as a whole, the images drawn by preservice teachers reflected the stereotype of a scientist as a man with a wild hairdo who wears a lab coat and glasses while working in a laboratory setting. However, results indicated statistically significant differences in stereotypical components of representations of scientists depending on preservice teachers’ program and previous science experiences. Post degree students in secondary science methods courses created images of scientists with fewer stereotypical elements than drawings created by students in the regular elementary program.

Keywords

Draw-A-Scientist Test (DAST) Mixed methods Preservice teachers Science education Visual data 

References

  1. Authors. (in press).Google Scholar
  2. Cakmakci, G., Tosun, O., Turgut, S., Orenler, S., Sengul, K., & Top, G. (2011). Promoting an inclusive image of scientists among students: Towards research evidence-based practice. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 9, 627–655.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Carnes, G. N. (2009). Interpreting drawings of preservice teachers. In J. E. Pederson & K. D. Finson (Eds.), Visual data: Understanding and applying visual data to research in education (pp. 79–92). Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense.Google Scholar
  4. Chambers, D. W. (1983). Stereotypic image of the scientist: The Draw-A-Scientist test. Science Education, 67(2), 255–265.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Christidou, V. (2011). Interest, attitudes and images related to science: Combining students’ voices with the voices of school science, teachers, and popular science. International Journal of Environmental and Science Education, 6(2), 141–159.Google Scholar
  6. Creswell, J., & Plano Clark, V. (2007). Designing and conducting mixed methods research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  7. Finson, K. D. (2002). Drawing a scientist: What we do and do not know after fifty years of drawings. School Science and Mathematics, 102(7), 335–345.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Finson, K. D. (2009). What drawings reveal about perceptions of scientists: Visual data operationally defined. In J. E. Pederson & K. D. Finson (Eds.), Visual data: Understanding and applying visual data to research in education (pp. 59–77). Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense.Google Scholar
  9. Finson, K. D., Beaver, J. B., & Cramond, B. L. (1995). Development and field test of a checklist for the Draw-A-Scientist test. School Science and Mathematics, 95(4), 195–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Flick, U. (2002). An introduction to qualitative research (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  11. Fung, Y. Y. H. (2002). A comparative study of primary and secondary school students’ images of scientists. Research in Science and Technological Education, 20(2), 199–213. doi:10.1080/0263514022000030453.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Huber, R. A., & Burton, G. M. (1995). What do students think scientists look like? School Science and Mathematics, 95(7), 371–376.Google Scholar
  13. IBM SPSS Inc. (2010). PASW STATISTICS 18.0 command syntax reference. Chicago, IL: SPSS Inc.Google Scholar
  14. Kazdin, A. E. (2011). Single-case research design: Methods for clinical and applied settings (2nd ed.). Oxford, UK: Oxford University.Google Scholar
  15. Kearney, K. (2009). Participant-generated visual data: Drawing out emotions. In J. E. Pederson & K. D. Finson (Eds.), Visual data: Understanding and applying visual data to research in education (pp. 51–58). Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense.Google Scholar
  16. Leblebicioglu, G., Metin, D., Yardimci, E., & Cetin, P. S. (2011). The effect of informal and formal interaction between scientists and children at a science camp on their images of scientists. Science Education International, 22(3), 158–174.Google Scholar
  17. Losh, S. C., Wilke, R., & Pop, M. (2008). Some methodological issues with “Draw a Scientist Tests” among young children. International Journal of Science Education, 30(6), 773–792. doi:10.1080/09500690701250452.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Manzoli, F., Castelfranchi, Y., Gouthier, D., & Cannata, I. (2006). Children’s perceptions of science and scientists. Proceedings of the 9 th international conference on public communication of science and technology. Seoul. Available at http://www.pcst2006.org/.
  19. McDuffie, T. E. (2001). Scientists: Geeks & nerds? Science and Children, 38(8), 16–19.Google Scholar
  20. Mead, M., & Metraux, R. (1957). Image of the scientist among high school students. Science, 126(3270), 384–390.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Medina-Jerez, W., Middleton, K. V., & Orihuela-Rabaza, W. (2010). Using the DAST-C to explore Columbian and Bolivian students’ images of scientists. International Journal of Science and Mathematics, 9, 657–690.Google Scholar
  22. Minogue, J. (2010). What is the teacher doing? What are the students doing? An application of the Draw-a-Science-Teacher test. Journal of Science Teacher Education,. doi:10.1007/s10972-009-9170-7.Google Scholar
  23. Moseley, C., & Norris, D. (1999). Preservice teachers’ views of scientists. Science and Children, 36(2), 50–53.Google Scholar
  24. Narayan, R., Park, S., & Peker, D. (2009). Sculpted by culture: Students’ embodied images of scientists. Proceedings of the 3rd international conference to review research on science, technology and mathematics education (pp. 45–51), Mumbai, India. Available at http://cvs.gnowledge.org/episteme3/proc_pdf.php.
  25. Pedersen, J. E., & Finson, K. D. (2009). Visual data: Understanding and applying visual data to research in education. Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense.Google Scholar
  26. Rahm, J., & Charbonneau, P. (1997). Probing stereotypes through students’ drawings of scientists. American Journal of Physics, 65(8), 774–778.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Rosenthal, D. B. (1993). Images of scientists: A comparison of biology and liberal arts majors. School Science and Mathematics, 93(4), 212–216.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Schibeci, R. (2006). Student images of scientists: What are they? Do they matter? Teaching Science, 52(2), 12–16.Google Scholar
  29. Stuart, C., & Thurlow, D. (2000). Making it their own: Preservice teachers’ experiences, beliefs and classroom practice. Journal of Teacher Education, 51(2), 113–121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Thomas, M. D., Henley, T. B., & Snell, C. M. (2006). The Draw a Scientist Test: A different population and a somewhat different story. College Student Journal, 40(1), 140–148.Google Scholar
  31. Yore, L. D. (2011). Foundations of scientific, mathematical, and technological literacies-common themes and theoretical frameworks. In L. D. Yore, E. Van der Flier-Keller, D. W. Blades, T. W. Pelton, & D. B. Zandvliet (Eds.), Pacific CRYSTAL centre for science, mathematics, and technology literacy: Lessons learned (pp. 23–44). Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Association for Science Teacher Education, USA 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Education and Professional StudiesGriffith UniversityMt GravattAustralia
  2. 2.University of VictoriaVictoriaCanada

Personalised recommendations