The Effect of Media on Preservice Science Teachers’ Attitudes Toward Astronomy and Achievement in Astronomy Class
Studies show that it is hard to change students’ attitudes toward science. This study specifically explored if media affect preservice science teachers’ attitudes toward astronomy and their astronomy achievement. The sample for the pilot study consisted of 196 preservice science and mathematics teachers for attitude assessment and 230 preservice science and mathematics teachers for achievement test. The participants of the main study were 88 preservice science teachers for attitude assessment and 82 preservice science teachers for achievement test. Survey of Attitudes toward Astronomy was used for attitudes assessment. In addition, the researcher developed the Astronomy Concept Test (AstroCoT) to test preservice science teachers’ astronomy achievement.
Pre-post design was used in the current study. The results showed no significant differences between groups for attitudes and achievement. There were no means effects of media on preservice science teachers’ attitudes toward astronomy and achievement in astronomy class. However, preservice science teachers’ attitudes toward astronomy and achievement in astronomy both improved significantly within each group (with or without media). Even though media was not apparently the reason for the significant changes, it is notable that the preservice science teachers did develop positive attitudes toward astronomy and also increased their achievement in astronomy.