Pedagogical practices, discourses and teaching knowledge in Geoscience and Environmental Education

Wednesday 4:30pm-5:45pm TSU - Humphries: 118
Poster Session Part of Wednesday


Denise Bacci, Universidade de Sao Paulo
This study derives from the professional development and experiences at the University of São Paulo, Brazil, as a teaccher in the Geosciences and Environmental Education Undergraduate Program, at Geosciences Institute. The goal was to investigate teachers' pedagogical content knowledge base (practices, discourses and concepts) in the licentiate degree. The theoretical framework is based on the categorization of pedagogical practices and faculty knowledge dimensions that involves three types of knowledge of a pedagogical concept—theoretical, technical and practical. The research used mixed methods to collect data. Semi-structured follow-up interviews were carried out with nine faculty members. The interviews were designed to generate in-depth profiles of teachers' views of teaching, with open questions considering the categories of pedagogical knowledge. The questions were organized into three categories with sixteen questions about the professional dimension, thirty-four on the pedagogical dimension and twelve on the organizational dimension. Documents relating to pedagogical practices, program designs and curriculum were analyzed. Classroom observation used RTOP protocol. The categorization of teaching knowledge was performed through methodological triangulation, in which the data were interpreted from different authors and methods to understand convergent and divergent points. Categorization pointed to a framework where traditional/teacher centered practices are still predominant, but some of them attempt innovation in geoscience education and reflections about the importance of pedagogical knowledge and professional development. The results showed a panorama of teaching practices in Geoscience Institute, at University of São Paulo. There is strong consistency between instructors' discourses and pedagogical practices observed in classroom. Pedagogical concepts need theoretical-methodological approaches in the professional development to building teaching identity. The organizational knowledge points to a critical view to the departments and management of the university, but not for the basic education. The results indicate possibilities for effective changes in pedagogical practices with professional development programs.