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Experiences and opinions of mathematics and physics teachers regarding cross-curricular integration

Ana Dejak (2022) Experiences and opinions of mathematics and physics teachers regarding cross-curricular integration. MSc thesis.

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    Abstract

    Cross-curricular integration is the integration of different contents and objectives of individual subjects. Selected topics must be discussed comprehensively and presented from as many different aspects as possible, so they can be understood by all. That is not an easy thing to do, so teachers must be properly qualified for implementing cross-curricular teaching and, above all, willing to teach that way. Cross-curricular integration can be carried out in many ways, but the most important thing is that theory and practice are intertwined. Through cross-curricular integration students are to gain new knowledge from different areas. It is the teacher's role to guide the students and motivate them to work. Through cross-curricular integration the students learn about and meet new learning objectives on their own. Research shows that teachers do not often implement cross-curricular integration; the main reasons are said to be a lack of literature and of knowledge. The theoretical section gives a historical overview of cross-curricular integration and its definition. It mentions its main characteristics, describes the role of the teacher and the student in cross-curricular teaching, and defines the teacher's professional development through the implementation of cross-curricular integration. Then, it mentions and describes the models and strategies of cross-curricular integration, as well as its advantages and barriers. Lastly, I reviewed the Mathematics and Physics curricula and defined potential links between the two subjects, as the theoretical section focused on the cross-curricular integration between Mathematics and Physics with other subjects. Qualitative research was conducted in the empirical section to get a better insight into the experiences and opinions of Mathematics and Physics teachers regarding cross-curricular integration. Four aspects were placed at the forefront: the frequency of implementation; the teachers' experiences; their opinions; and the topics teachers consider the most appropriate for integration. Through the research I attempted to determine the experiences and opinions of Mathematics and Physics teachers regarding cross-curricular integration. By conducting interviews, I involved 10 Mathematics and Physics teachers in the survey. It has been determined that teachers do not carry out cross-curricular integration often and that they would like to do so more often. Most of them mentioned lack of time as the reason for that. When they do carry out cross-curricular integration, they do so mainly to show the students how the subject can be applied in everyday life, so the students can get the most out of this teaching method. They usually rely on those who teach the same subject or at least a similar one. Teachers have positive experiences with cross-curricular integration. They believe that teachers have much to gain through cross-curricular integration and the students even more so. The students and teachers alike gain new knowledge and skills, and improve cooperation among fellow teachers or classmates. The teachers also encounter barriers, most often a lack of interest among fellow teachers in collaborating, and a shortage of time. Regardless, most teachers feel that the advantage of cross-curricular integration lies in motivating the students and increasing their interest in working and learning. At the end, the teachers enumerated quite a few useful cross-curricular links which they find sensible and which they implement; each of them also described at least one example of good practice.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: cross-curricular integration, curricular links, experience with cross-curricular integration, opinions on cross-curricular integration, advantages and limitations of cross-curricular integration, Mathematics and Physics
    Number of Pages: 117
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    prof. dr. Milena Valenčič ZuljanMentor
    asist. dr. Romina Plešec GasparičComentor
    Link to COBISS: https://plus.si.cobiss.net/opac7/bib/peflj/104230915
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 7152
    Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2022 10:34
    Last Modified: 08 Apr 2022 10:34
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/7152

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