Teacher Attitudes Towards Misconceptions in Physics Learning
This is a study of the relationship between teachers' views about misconceptions in secondary physics learning and their classroom teaching practices. An in-depth exploration of individual teacher viewpoints was conducted using Q methodology. A 50-statement Q sample was sorted by 23 physics teachers (14 experienced and 9 novices). Items were obtained from the literature and were chosen after pilot testing with a group of trainee graduate science teachers. Results showed three distinct viewpoints that reflected the "conception of misconceptions" in physics learning of two thirds of the participant teachers. Factors found were: tolerant/positive acceptance, confrontational/non-acceptant or less aware/indifferent about the nature of misconceptions and how to address them. Little difference was seen between the views of novice and experienced teachers. Implications for the next stage of research are discussed.