Abstract


INVESTIGATION OF EPISTEMOLOGICAL BELIEFS AND THINKING STYLES OF PHYSICAL EDUCATION AND SPORT TEACHERS

The aim of this study is investigating physical education and sports teachers’ epistemological beliefs and their thinking styles in terms of several variables and finding out the relation between aforementioned concepts. The study was conducted with the relational scanning model, one of the quantitative research methods with 268 physical education and sports teachers working at different school stages and chosen through simple random sampling. “Epistemological Belief Scale” adapted in Turkish by Deryakulu and Bıkmaz (2003) and “Thinking Styles Inventory” adapted in Turkish by Buluş (2003) were used to gather data. Independent sample t-test, One-Way ANOVA, and Pearson correlation test were used for analysis. The findings of the study showed that while professional experience of physical education and sports teachers, the school stage at which they worked, and the place of their work residence didn’t cause statistically meaningful differences between groups in terms of teachers’ epistemological beliefs and thinking styles, gender variable caused statistically meaningful differences related to “legislative” and “judicial” thinking styles and “scientific epistemic” belief. Also, reading habit variable caused statistically meaningful differences related to “judicial”, “monarchic”, “oligarchic”, global”, “external”, “liberal” thinking styles and their scientific epistemological beliefs. At the end of the study, a meaningful relationship between total scores of “Epistemological Belief Scale” and “Thinking Styles Inventory” and “legislative”, “executive”, judicial”, hierarchic,”, “anarchic”, “local”, “liberal”, “conservative” sub scale scores were found at a moderate level. Also, a meaningful relationship between total scores of the scales and “monarchic”, “oligarchic”, “global”, “internal”, external” sub scale scores at low level. According to the findings of the study, the teachers who participated in the current study had strong conservative epistemological beliefs. It is recommended that some courses such as nature of science and scientific knowledge should be taken into graduate programmes as compulsory courses, and collaborating with MoNE and universities, some in-service training programmes to enhance teachers ‘epistemological beliefs should be designed for physical education teachers who are attributed as source of knowledge and guide to get knowledge. Also, it is recommended that some courses related to nature of science should be taken into high and secondary school curriculums. Besides, to enable the teachers have different thinking styles, some in- and post- service training programmes should be developed, and teachers should be encouraged to take part in these programmes.



Keywords

Physical education teacher, Scientific epistemological belief, Thinking styles


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