Pre-service teachers' epistemic perspectives about philosophy in the classroom: it is not a bunch of 'hippie stuff'

Brownlee, Joanne and Curtis, Elizabeth and Davey Chesters, Sarah and Cobb-Moore, Charlotte and Spooner-Lane, Rebecca and Whiteford, Chrystal and Tait, Gordon (2014) Pre-service teachers' epistemic perspectives about philosophy in the classroom: it is not a bunch of 'hippie stuff'. Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice, 20 (2). pp. 170-188. ISSN 1354-0602


Using epistemic perspectives as a theoretical framework, this study investigated Australian pre-service teachers’ perspectives about knowing, knowledge and children’s learning, as they engaged in a semester-long unit on philosophy in the classroom. During the field experience component of the unit, pre-service teachers were required to teach at least one philosophy lesson. Pre-service teachers completed the Personal Epistemological Beliefs Survey at the beginning and end of the unit. They were also interviewed in focus groups at the end of the semester to investigate their views about children’s learning. Paired sample t-tests were used to explore changes in epistemic beliefs over time. Significant differences were found for only some individual items on the survey. However, when interviewed, pre-service teachers indicated that field experiences helped them consider children as competent ‘thinkers’ who were capable of engaging in philosophy in the classroom. They reported predominantly student-centred perspectives of children’s learning, although a process of adjudication (exploring disagreements and evidence for responses) was lacking in these responses.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 12 May 2020 04:26
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2020 04:34
Uncontrolled Keywords: philosophy in the classroom; epistemic beliefs; personal epistemology; pre-service teachers; perspectives of children’s learning
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390307 Teacher education and professional development of educators
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