Didaktik der Biologie (englisch)

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Typical teaching patterns in the subject biology and their relationship to teacher and student variables (2006- ...)

involved persons:

LMU: Prof. Dr. Birgit J. Neuhaus

Universität Duisburg-Essen: Prof. Dr. Angela Sandmann, Kirsten Matthes

Student assessment studies such as TIMSS and PISA have revealed deficits concerning the German education system. These studies, however, neither provide cause analyses nor offer action alternatives. By means of video studies and other approaches researchers want to examine/ analyse teaching/ behavioural routines and relationships between lesson scripts/ instructional scripts, teaching and learning processes, and learning success.

In the first large-scale international comparative video studies (TIMSS video study 1995, 1999), researchers tried to find explanations for pupils’ achievement differences in (the subject) mathematics. There are only a small number of video studies in the field of (the) (natural) sciences, especially in the field of biology/ in the biology domain. The present study will therefore focus on biology lessons/ education/ instruction.

First objective of the study is to search systematically for instructional scripts, i.e. routines of behavioural patterns, such as have already been described lessons by the TIMS video study in a number of countries and which have also been examined in pyhsics education in Germany (Seidel, 2003). Furthermore, it will be investigated how the teacher’s personality influence instruction.

Depending on their attitudes towards biology education, Neuhaus (2005) distinguishes between three different types of biology teachers: the Pedagogical-Innovative Type, the Scientific-Innovative Type and the Scientific-Conventional Type. Klieme and Rakoczy (2003) describe three different (basic) dimensions of instructional quality in which mathematics lessons differ systematically in Germany.

These dimensions are following three pedagogical traditions: Herbart underlines clear lesson planning, a lesson structure along well defined phases, and trouble-free class management. The reformist tradition encourages active and independent learning processes of the pupils, and the didactical tradition of the subject focuses on a clear structuring of the lesson’s contents.

Second objective of this study is to analyze the relationship between teaching patterns as described by Klieme and Rakoczy (2003) and related teacher and student variables in the in biology education. 

The dissertation is carried out in cooperation with the Department for Biology Education at nwu-University of Duisburg-Essen.