Congruence between intention and strategy in university science teachers' approaches to teaching
This paper describes the results, and some implications, of an empirical study of the congruence between intention and strategy of university science teachers' approaches to teaching in their first year science courses. The study drew upon the results of a previous phenomenographic study which identified qualitatively different approaches to teaching. An approaches to teaching inventory was subsequently developed which included scales representing the intentions and strategies identified in the first study. This inventory was distributed to a sample of university teachers of first year science courses in Australia. The results confirmed the proposed relationship between intention and strategy, and showed that a Student-focused Strategy was associated with a Conceptual Change Intention, while a Teacher-focused Strategy was associated with an Information Transfer Intention. It is concluded that the traditional form of academic development focussing on teaching strategies (for example, activity based strategies) is unlikely to be successful without an ongoing focus on the intentions which are associated with the strategy.