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In our research project 'The Role of Teachers’ Beliefs and Instructional Practices for Students’ Beliefs and Academic Outcomes' we examine the longitudinal relationships between teachers' cognitive and motivational beliefs, instructional quality, and students' cognitive and motivational development at the end of secondary school. The research project is a joint project with the Department of Educational Psychology at University of Potsdam (DFG project: DFG: LA-3522 / 5-1 and SCHIE-283 / 17-1).
Objectives of the study
Few studies deal with the mediation processes that might explain the mechanisms underlying the relationships between teachers' beliefs and students' academic success defined as student valuing of learning, educational and occupational aspirations and performance. Furthermore, moderator effects of context variables such as class composition in terms of gender, migration background, and achievement level are rarely considered when analyzing the relationships between teacher beliefs and student academic development.
Our goal is to identify those processes that underlie the longitudinal relationships between teachers' motivational and cognitive beliefs (for example, their interest in teaching and their self-efficacy) and the academic success of students in secondary school. Furthermore, the role of the classroom context on these relationships will be examined.
The project is designed as a three-wave longitudinal questionnaire study (surveys in september/october 2019, may/june 2020, and september/october 2020). Grade nine students and their mathematics teachers will be interviewed at schools in Berlin and Brandenburg.
The innovative character of the proposed project lies within the theory-driven investigation of a mediation model whose basic assumptions combine approaches from educational science (Helmke's offer-and-use model) and educational psychology (Eccles's expectancy-value model).
Relevance to educational research
The results of our study are relevant to empirical educational research, as only a few studies have dealt with the longitudinal processes underlying the interrelationships between teachers' beliefs, their instructional practices, and the learners' beliefs and learning outcomes.
Relevance to educational practice
The results of the project enable teachers to gain a deeper understanding of their contribution to motivational teaching-learning processes. The goal is to learn more about the characteristics of motivating lessons and to learn about the connections of motivated teachers. In addition, by examining the role of the class composition in terms of gender, migration background, and level of performance in the investigated context, ways of dealing with heterogeneous learning groups are also shown.
The project is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).
The project is a cooperation project between the Department of School Education (https://www.uni-potsdam.de/schulpaedagogik/index.html) and the Department of Educational Psychology (https://www.uni-potsdam.de/educational-psychology/ index.html).
Further studies on the thematic focus
Our MOVE study also deals with students' motivational development in school.