Teachers' experiences of the teaching of personal capabilities through the science curriculum
This thesis represents the study of teachers' perceptions and experiences of the teaching of Personal Capabilities (PCs) through the Science curriculum. It documents the process by which teachers were successfully enabled to incorporate the teaching of PCs through the Science curriculum. An action research methodology provided the basis for the development of the study which benefited from flexible, collaborative partnerships between teachers and the researcher. Facilitation and support prompted action and continuous reflection on research interventions, their outcomes and influence on pedagogy, student development and learning. Emphasis on regular teacher-researcher interactions during curriculum innovation had significant implications on teachers' professional development, and was critical in affecting pedagogic change. Collaborative partnerships emerged as a powerful tool for understanding the teaching and learning of PCs. Semi-structured interviews and questionnaires, classroom observations, reflective logbook entries and discussions formed the main sources of data, represented in case studies which provide contextualised representations of teacher activity. Using ten operationally-defined PCs, it is shown that stUdents' development can be enhanced through the Science curriculum. A process model including: knowing, self-assessing, action planning, acting and reviewing, illustrates the teachers' and stUdents' actions during PC development. Strategies for facilitating students' PC improvement are illustrative of the teachers' modified pedagogic approaches to subject teaching, which encourage self-awareness and prompt behavioural change. Findings from this study suggest further research and provide recommendations for policy makers, teachers and educational researchers, highlighting the constraining nature of current National Curriculum (NC) assessment strategies.