Learning Environments Research

, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 153–174 | Cite as

A cross-national mixed-method study of reality pedagogy

  • George SirrakosJr.
  • Barry J. Fraser
Original Paper


This mixed-methods cross-national study investigated the effectiveness of reality pedagogy (an approach in which teachers become part of students’ activities, practices and rituals) in terms of changes in student perceptions of their learning environment and attitudes towards science. A questionnaire was administered to 142 students in grades 8–10 in the Bronx, New York City and Dresden, Germany. The questionnaire combines learning environment scales from the Constructivist Learning Environment Survey and the What Is Happening In this Class? Questionnaire with attitude scales from the Test of Science-Related Attitudes. Student interviews were used to support questionnaire findings. Quantitative data analyses revealed that reality pedagogy had a greater impact on students in the Bronx than in Dresden, with qualitative data clarifying differences in how reality pedagogy was enacted in each geographic area. Overall, our findings add to the body of evidence concerning the effectiveness of reality pedagogy as an approach to teaching and learning science across a variety of contexts.


Cross-national Learning environments Mixed-methods Reality pedagogy Science education Student attitudes 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Beekey Education CenterKutztown University of PennsylvaniaKutztownUSA
  2. 2.Science and Mathematics Education CentreCurtin UniversityPerthAustralia

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