Teacher Perception, Practices, And Attitudes Towards Approaches To Learning

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Satish Prakash Chand


The ways teachers organise learning in classrooms vary. While some teachers emphasise deep processing of information and meaning making, encouraging deep approaches to learning, others focus on students' processing of information in the shortest possible time, encouraging surface approaches to learning. The purpose of this study was to examine the teacher's perceptions, practices, and attitudes towards approaches to learning. Participant observation, semi-structured interviews, and document analysis were used to collect data. The findings showed that teachers distinguish deep approaches to learning as those in which students can apply newly learned information for a longer period of time and develop as critical thinkers and problem solvers. The study also showed that teachers prefer surface approaches over deep approaches to learning. Teachers focus on students completing activities in the shortest possible time and memorising facts. Much emphasis is placed on students' remembering the materials taught in classrooms and replicating them when probed in exams. While teachers feel it is vital to engross students in deep approaches to learning, many factors avert them from accomplishing this. One of the distinguishing factors is the curriculum itself. Teachers are not content with the ever-changing nature of the curriculum, which takes place virtually every year. This study calls for greater teacher professional development and judiciously planned curriculum reforms.

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