Volume 20 (2013)
What do Students Want in their Science Teachers and their Science Lessons?
Likert-type questionnaires were completed by 392, 15-year-old students from 13 schools across Trinidad and Tobago. Data gained from the questionnaires were used to report on those characteristics students deemed desirable in their science teachers. Students' views were sought on four key elements of good practice in science teaching teachers' subject matter competence, teachers' pedagogical content knowledge, teachers' affectivity toward students, and the nature of science lessons taught by teachers. The data were analysed in the quantitative paradigm to yield response category sample percentages, which were used to make comparisons among the four target areas. The findings show that, for students, teachers' affectivity was the most important characteristic of a good science teacher. The second most favoured characteristic for students was teachers' pedagogical content knowledge, which was followed by teachers' subject matter knowledge.
Keywords: Science Education; Secondary School Teachers; Science Teachers; Teacher Characteristics; Student Attitudes; Secondary School Students; Trinidad and Tobago