Faculty Publications

Document Type


Publication Date

April 2011


Teacher quality is among the strongest correlates of student outcomes. However, only about a quarter of the nation’s elementary teachers consider themselves qualified to teach science. In this descriptive and exploratory study, we investigated whether helping pre-service teacher candidates explore connections between science and issues of equity, particularly around sustainability issues, could help them see the importance of teaching science to their students more often. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected from 59 students enrolled in revised science methods courses at a large public university. Our findings suggest that positioning science instruction thusly was perceived as a strong motivator to include science instruction in their future elementary classes, even when they themselves felt uncomfortable with their own science content understanding.


Paper presented as part of the session: Roundtable Session: Lenses on Negotiating Access to Science Teaching and Learning.This paper is also available in the AERA Online Paper Repository. Each presenter retains copyright on the full-text paper. Repository users should follow legal and ethical practices in their use of repository material; permission to reuse material must be sought from the presenter, who owns copyright. Users should be aware of the AERA Code of Ethics.