Changes in prospective primary school mathematics teachers’ conceptions of teaching and learning

Mathematics teachers’ conceptions of teaching and learning


  • Elif Aksan Kilicaslan Trabzon University


Teaching-learning conception is related to preferences in teaching-learning. There are two major teaching-learning approaches in education, which are constructivist and traditional approaches. In parallel, education curricula are being developed in compliance with this understanding. It is also manifest in the current mathematics curricula. This study intends to reveal any changes, if any, in the teaching-learning conceptions of prospective teachers, who are the future teachers, from the beginning till the end of their university education, and to find out the reasons driving such change or lack of change. According to this study, the prospective primary school mathematics teachers adopt the constructivist teaching-learning approach regardless of their grade level. However, it is worth noting that the behavioral tendency of the 1st graders declines while their constructivist tendency increases by the time they reach the 4th grade. There is a transition from behavioral learning approach to constructivist learning approach in the learning-teaching understanding of 4th grade teacher candidates. This change is usually linked to Instruction-dominated courses. Depending on the results of the study, it is suggested that during teacher education, prospective teachers should be trained on teaching-learning conceptions and they should be given the chance to prepare and apply lesson plans in accordance with the conceptions.