Teachers’ Thinking in Previous Studies
Our study of teacher thinking is situated in a large body of previous research. In the past, researchers focused their attention primarily on teachers’ skills and dispositions. However, since the mid 1970’s (Halkes, 1986), investigators, armed with the new conceptual and methodological tools of cognitive science and interpretive research, have begun to examine the character and substance of teachers’ knowledge (Carter, 1990). Since then, researchers have come to view teachers’ knowledge and thinking as an important area of investigation (Morine-Dershimer, 1991). Several reviews of research in this area (e.g., Shavelson & Stern, 1981; Clark & Peterson, 1986; Carter, 1990) have conceptualized the field, offering a summary of research scopes, research methods, and findings. The study of teachers’ thinking includes research with both pre-service and in-service teachers. Although several differences have been found between the two populations, the concept “teachers’ thinking” usually refers to both groups.
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