Science Teacher Education in the Twenty-First Century: a Pedagogical Framework for Technology-Integrated Social Constructivism

Abstract

Changes in our global world have shifted the skill demands from acquisition of structured knowledge to mastery of skills, often referred to as twenty-first century competencies. Given these changes, a sequential explanatory mixed methods study was undertaken to (a) examine predominant instructional methods and technologies used by teacher educators, (b) identify attributes for learning and teaching in the twenty-first century, and (c) develop a pedagogical framework for promoting meaningful usage of advanced technologies. Quantitative and qualitative data were collected via an online survey, personal interviews, and written reflections with science teacher educators and student teachers. Findings indicated that teacher educators do not provide sufficient models for the promotion of reform-based practice via web 2.0 environments, such as Wikis, blogs, social networks, or other cloud technologies. Findings also indicated four attributes for teaching and learning in the twenty-first century: (a) adapting to frequent changes and uncertain situations, (b) collaborating and communicating in decentralized environments, (c) generating data and managing information, and (d) releasing control by encouraging exploration. Guided by social constructivist paradigms and twenty-first century teaching attributes, this study suggests a pedagogical framework for fostering meaningful usage of advanced technologies in science teacher education courses.

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Correspondence to Miri Barak.

Appendix A. A Survey on teacher education in the twenty-first century

Appendix A. A Survey on teacher education in the twenty-first century

Question 1: How often do you use the following technologies in your courses?

Scale: Always (5), Very Often (4), Sometimes (3), Rarely (2), Never (1)

  1. 1.

    Learning management system—for uploading the learning materials

  2. 2.

    Online asynchronous forums—for online group discussions

  3. 3.

    Online synchronous meetings—for real-time exchange of ideas

  4. 4.

    Online simulations—for introducing real-world situations

  5. 5.

    Wiki, blog—for generating and co-editing contents

  6. 6.

    Social networks—for sharing information and receiving feedback

  7. 7.

    Google drive—for online simultaneous collaborative learning

  8. 8.

    YouTube and video apps—for viewing and sharing educational videos

Question 2: How often do you expect student teachers to use the following technologies?

Scale: Always (5), Very Often (4), Sometimes (3), Rarely (2), Never (1)

  1. 1.

    Learning management system—for uploading the learning materials

  2. 2.

    Online asynchronous forums—for online group discussions

  3. 3.

    Online synchronous meetings—for real-time exchange of ideas

  4. 4.

    Online simulations—for introducing real-world situations

  5. 5.

    Wiki, blog—for generating and co-editing contents

  6. 6.

    Social networks—for sharing information and receiving feedback

  7. 7.

    Google drive—for online simultaneous collaborative learning

  8. 8.

    YouTube and video apps—for viewing and sharing educational videos

Question 3: How strongly do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements about the use of advanced educational technologies?

Scale: Strongly agree (5), Agree (4), Undecided (3), Disagree (2), Strongly disagree (1)

  1. 1.

    It improves the quality of my teaching

  2. 2.

    It improves the quality of my students’ learning

  3. 3.

    It corresponds with my teaching philosophy

  4. 4.

    It enhances my communication with students

  5. 5.

    It enhances communication among students

  6. 6.

    It doesn’t fit the discipline that I am teaching

  7. 7.

    I have sufficient pedagogical knowledge to efficiently integrate ICT in my course

  8. 8.

    I have the required technical knowledge to efficiently integrate ICT in my course

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Barak, M. Science Teacher Education in the Twenty-First Century: a Pedagogical Framework for Technology-Integrated Social Constructivism. Res Sci Educ 47, 283–303 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11165-015-9501-y

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Keywords

  • Twenty-first century competencies
  • Cloud applications
  • Social constructivism
  • Science teacher education
  • Technology-integrated learning