Pre-Service Teachers’ Use of Pedagogical Content Knowledge in Teaching and Learning Mathematics at Basic Seven in Akatsi District, Ghana (Published)
The purpose of the study is to explore how pre-service teachers’ use their Pedagogical Content Knowledge (teachers’ knowledge of content and students’ thinking process) to identify and diagnose students’ misconceptions in comparing, adding, multiplying and dividing fractions. Pre-service teachers were expected to identify students’ misconceptions, give reasons of students’ misconceptions, and ask specific questions to diagnose students’ thinking processes that lead to the misconceptions. A total of 72 pre-service teachers teaching Mathematics were purposively selected out of 320 students from the schools of practice. Descriptive survey design was used for the study. Data collected were analyzed using frequencies, percentages and means. The study revealed that about 60% of the pre-service teachers could identify the students’ misconceptions but only 17% of them could articulate the reasons for students’ misconceptions clearly. Also about 58% of the pre-service teachers asked probing questions instead of specific questions to diagnose students’ misconceptions and only about 14% of them asked specific questions. It was concluded that most of the pre-service teachers were able to identify students’ misconception but could not give reasons for the students’ misconceptions. In addition, majority of the pre-service teachers could not ask specific questions to diagnose students’ misconceptions. It was recommended that teacher training institutions integrate pedagogical content knowledge in to the curriculum to equip pre-service teachers with skills that would enable them to analyze students’ thinking processes.
Keywords: Akatsi District, Ghana, Knowledge, Mathematics, Pedagogical Content, Pre-Service, Teaching and Learning