Early years teachers’ epistemic beliefs and beliefs about children’s moral learning

Walker, Sue, Brownlee, Joanne M., Cobb-Moore, Charlotte, Boulton-Lewis, Gillian M., Ailwood, Joanne, Johansson, Eva, & Whiteford, Chrystal (2011) Early years teachers’ epistemic beliefs and beliefs about children’s moral learning. Teachers and Teaching : Theory and Practice, 18(2), pp. 263-275.

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There is strong political and social interest in values education both internationally and across Australia. Investment in young children is recognised as important for the development of moral values for a cohesive society; however, little is known about early years teachers’ beliefs about moral values teaching and learning. The aim of the current study was to investigate the relationships between Australian early years teachers’ epistemic beliefs and their beliefs about children’s moral learning. Three hundred and seventy-nine teachers completed a survey about their personal epistemic beliefs and their beliefs about children’s moral learning. Results indicated that teachers with more sophisticated epistemic beliefs viewed children as capable of taking responsibility for their own moral learning. Conversely, teachers who held more naive or simplistic personal epistemic beliefs agreed that children need to learn morals through learning the rules for behaviour. Results are discussed in terms of the implications for moral pedagogy in the classroom and teacher professional development. It is suggested that in conjunction with explicitly reflecting on epistemic beliefs, professional development may need to assist teachers to ascertain how their beliefs might relate to their moral pedagogies in order to make any adjustments.

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7 citations in Scopus
6 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 45873
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Epistemic beliefs, moral learning, moral pedagogy, early childhood
DOI: 10.1080/13540602.2012.632267
ISSN: 1354-0602
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > EDUCATION SYSTEMS (130100) > Early Childhood Education (excl. Maori) (130102)
Divisions: Past > Research Centres > Office of Education Research
Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2011 Taylor & Francis
Deposited On: 12 Sep 2011 03:58
Last Modified: 22 Jun 2017 19:57

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