SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract

Science locus of control (SciLOC) orientation is examined as a predictor of attitudes toward science teaching among 104 preservice elementary school teachers. SciLOC orientation refers to beliefs people hold regarding their personal efficacy, or ability to influence the outcome of events, in situations where decisions or actions require either the application of scientific knowledge or the use of reasoning skills associated with scientific thinking. A causal model that links such beliefs to attitudes toward science teaching was formulated and tested in this study. Multiple regression analysis demonstrates that 46% of the variance in attitudes toward science teaching expressed by subjects in the sample studied can be explained by SciLOC orientation. Path analysis of the proposed causal model accounts for 57% of the variance in expressed attitudes and 11% of the variance in SciLOC orientation. These results are interpreted as evidence that SciLOC orientation is a major contributor to attitudes expressed toward science teaching among preservice elementary teachers, with the major contributors to SciLOC orientation remaining to be identified. A troublesome relationship between expressed attitudes and academic performance in college science is also noted.