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Online Argumentation Activities Increase Climate Change Awareness Among Preservice Science Teachers

The Tecched Project addresses the need for university university Faculty members to be better prepared to teach about climate change in their courses. The initial phase of the project involves engaging with teachers and students to determine the issues related to developing a technology-enhanced curriculum for university students.

Ege University researchers, Lokman Topbaş, an undergraduate student, and Associate Professor Bahadir Namdar, recently completed a project aimed at enhancing climate change awareness among preservice science teachers. The project, supported by Ege University Office of Scientific Research Projects, involved the implementation of online argumentation activities as part of a four-day online professional development program. miro-image

A total of 32 preservice science teachers from 22 different universities across Turkey participated in the program, which focused on increasing their knowledge and awareness of climate change. To assess the impact of the intervention, pre- and post-program surveys were conducted, and the online written arguments produced by the participants during the activities served as additional data sources.

The figure shows the results of participants’ collaborative online work on the effects of climate change in the Miro tool.

The results of the research demonstrated a significant improvement in the participants’ content knowledge of climate change. Following the online professional development program, the preservice teachers exhibited a higher level of justification and increased awareness of various dimensions related to climate change. This indicates that the argumentation activities effectively contributed to their overall understanding and awareness of this critical issue.

As recognition for their active participation, the participants were awarded certificates of completion at the end of the program. The project’s success highlights the potential of online argumentation activities as a valuable tool in enhancing climate change awareness among preservice science teachers, ultimately equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed to address this pressing global challenge in their future classrooms.

Meanwhile a questionnaire among 130 pre-service teachers was implemented at the University of Ruse “Angel Kanchev” (Bulgaria) showed that:
• 86% were convinced that climate change affects us all;
• 88% thought that global climate change can disrupt the balance in nature;
• 90% had not taken a course on climate change;
• 88% believed they have very low preparation for teaching climate change;
• Only 38% had used information and communication technologies to receive information about climate change and
• The most commonly used sources of information had been video materials, presentations, social networks, news, TV, virtual textbooks, etc.

The challenge for the project will be to establish ionnovative approaches to teaching about climate change while addressing ‘character and values’ that are considered a prerequisites for responsible 21st-century citizenship.

Find out more about the Tecced Project