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Summary


EXAMINING PRESERVICE GEOGRAPHY TEACHERS’ DISPOSITIONS TO TEACH SPATIAL THINKING SKILLS

Spatial thinking is a skill that consists of spatial concepts, spatial representation tools, and reasoning processes. The present study investigated preservice teacher dispositions towards teaching spatial thinking through geography. The study also examined the effects of various variables on participants’ dispositions. Survey method was utilized in order to reach the goals of the study. Participants in the study consisted of 354 preservice teachers studying in geography teaching departments across five public universities in Turkey during the 2018/9 academic calendar. 177 participants (50 %) were male and 177 were female (50 %). 15,3 % of the participants were in their first year of study, 22,3 % in their second, 26% in their third, and 36,4 % in their fourth. Those participants were recruited on a voluntary basis. The data collection tool was the Teaching Spatial Thinking through Geography Disposition Inventory developed by Jo and Bednarz (2014) and adapted into Turkish by Şanlı and Sezer (2019). The collected data were analysed using descriptive statistics, independent t-tests, and one way ANOVA. The results suggested that preservice teacher dispositions towards teaching spatial thinking in geography courses were high. There was not a significant difference between male and female participants’ perceptions. Additionally, teachers who took instructional technologies and Geographic Information Systems had significantly higher dispositions in the category of adopting spatial representation tools and GSTs in instruction. A number of suggestions for practitioners and policy makers are offeren based on the results of the study.



Keywords

Geography teaching, spatial thinking, teacher dispositions, preservice teachers, Turkey


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