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Multiple Perspectives for the Study of Teaching: A Conceptual Framework for Characterizing and Accessing Science Teachers' Practical-Moral Knowledge

Multiple Perspectives for the Study of Teaching: A Conceptual Framework for Characterizing and Accessing Science Teachers' Practical-Moral Knowledge
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Author(s): Sara Salloum (Long Island University – Brooklyn, USA)
Copyright: 2015
Pages: 25
Source title: STEM Education: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7363-2.ch030

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Abstract

This chapter outlines a framework that characterizes science teachers' practical-moral knowledge utilizing the Aristotelian concept of phronesis/practical wisdom. The meaning of phronesis is further explicated and its relevance to science education are outlined utilizing a virtue-based view of knowledge and practical hermeneutics. First, and to give a background, assumptions about teacher knowledge from a constructivist and sociocultural perspective are outlined. Second, the Aristotelian notion of phronesis (practical wisdom) is explicated, especially in terms of how it differs from other characterizations of practical knowledge in science education and how it relates to practical-moral knowledge. Finally, the authors discuss how the very nature of such practical-moral knowledge makes it ambiguous and hard to articulate, and therefore, a hermeneutic model that explores teachers' practical-moral knowledge indirectly by investigating teachers' commitments, interpretations, actions, and dialectic interactions is outlined. Implications for research and teacher education are outlined. Empirical examples are used to demonstrate certain points. A virtue-based view of knowledge is not meant to replace others, but as a means to enrich the understandings of the complexity of teacher knowledge and to enhance the effectiveness of teacher educators.

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