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Teachers' knowledge, beliefs, and experiences in supporting students to become scientifically literate citizens: A community of practice perspective
AuthorCollins, Mandi M
Curriculum and Instruction
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The COVID-19 pandemic has raised societal awareness of the role scientific literacy has in understanding and problem-solving complex societal issues. Misinformation during the pandemic relating to health, disease, and vaccines has impacted public health efforts to control the novel coronavirus. One of K-12 science education’s main goals is to support the development of a scientifically literate populace to mitigate the challenges of misinformation. While interdisciplinary teaching may be a potential solution in supporting these efforts, how English Language Arts (ELA), science, and social studies teachers work together to support the science education goal of developing students to become scientifically literate citizens is unclear. Using a qualitative, instrumental, multiple-case study design, the purpose of this study is to explore teachers’ knowledge, beliefs, and experiences, within a community of practice, which may contribute to the goal of developing students to become scientifically literate citizens. In this study, I use a community of practice lens to examine the mutual engagement, joint enterprise, and shared repertoire of teachers’ pedagogical content knowledge, self-efficacy beliefs, and SSI-based education. The six teachers that participated work at a public charter school in interdisciplinary teams composed of a sixth through eighth-grade ELA, science, and social studies teacher. I collected data through semi-structured individual interviews, individual think-alouds, and focus group think-alouds with two interdisciplinary teams of teachers. I share findings that are illustrated by seven themes in response to the four research questions. I will also share how my study contributes to existing research and implications for practice and research.