The efficacy of the Dimensions of Attitudes toward Science (DAS) for explaining primary preservice teachers’ intention to teach science

Article


Mills, Reece, Whiteford, Chrystal, Brown, Daniel and Tomas, Louisa. 2023. "The efficacy of the Dimensions of Attitudes toward Science (DAS) for explaining primary preservice teachers’ intention to teach science." International Journal of Science Education. 45 (3), pp. 165 - 180. https://doi.org/10.1080/09500693.2022.2154131
Article Title

The efficacy of the Dimensions of Attitudes toward Science (DAS) for explaining primary preservice teachers’ intention to teach science

ERA Journal ID20612
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsMills, Reece, Whiteford, Chrystal, Brown, Daniel and Tomas, Louisa
Journal TitleInternational Journal of Science Education
Journal Citation45 (3), pp. 165 - 180
Number of Pages16
Year2023
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ISSN0950-0693
1464-5289
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/09500693.2022.2154131
Web Address (URL)https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09500693.2022.2154131
Abstract

There is a need for robust, empirically-validated conceptualisations of teachers’ attitudes towards teaching science, with a view to understand how these might explain their intention to teach science. The Dimensions of Attitudes Toward Science (DAS) theoretical framework suggests that cognitive, affective and perceived control dimensions of teachers’ professional attitudes may be related to their behavioural intention to teach science. While the DAS framework has been employed in numerous studies investigating the attitudes of preservice and inservice teachers, its efficacy remains mostly unknown. The current study employed a cross-sectional survey research design to investigate the question, to what extent does the DAS theoretical framework explain primary preservice teachers’ intention to prioritise teaching science in their future practice? Early childhood and primary preservice teachers (n = 250) at an Australian university completed the DAS instrument prior to completing a science curriculum unit. Structural equation modelling revealed inadequate/poor model fit across multiple indices. Perceived relevance of science education and enjoyment teaching science were statistically significant predictors of preservice teachers’ intention to prioritise teaching science, whereas other attitudinal constructs from the framework were not significant in this research. These findings warrant further attention to theories of behaviour and behaviour change in science education research.

Keywordsscience teaching; behavioural intention; Professional attitudes
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520102. Educational psychology
520505. Social psychology
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Byline AffiliationsQueensland University of Technology
Griffith University
James Cook University
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