Science Teachers' Cultural Beliefs And Conceptions Of the Nature of Science And Instruction
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This paper summarizes findings of a study which explored the relationship between science teachers’ orientation to traditional culture and their conceptions of the nature of science, science-technology related societal issues, and instructional ideology. It summarizes also their perceptions concerning interaction of traditional culture and science education. Practically the entire sample believed that indigenous culture and western science are two independent and seemingly irreconcilable systems of thinking, experiencing, and explaining phenomena. Teachers ’ orientation toward indigenous traditional culture was low but positively correlated to preference for traditional instructional ideology and modestly negatively correlated to inquiry instructional ideology, nature of science, and awareness of societal issue scores. They had inadequate understanding of Kimball’s (1967) model of the nature of science but showed adequate conception of the Rub b a-Andersen (1978) nature of scientific knowledge model. Although the teachers were pessimistic about the ability and desirability of science and technology to resolve environmental problems they had, overall, a positive and socially acceptable level of awareness of environmental conservation issues.