Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt, Lesley Wood and Ina Louw
Swe Khine Myint, Lourdusamy Atputhasamy, Ching Sing Chai and Timothy Teo
In recent years educators have been bombarded with various educational issues, such as the increase in curriculum content and the practical demands of classroom teaching, including how to cope with technological advances that have influenced how students learn, what they learn, and where they learn. To equip school students with the knowledge and skills to cope with today’s demands, teachers need sophisticated outlooks and considerable knowledge. Research has shown that personal epistemological beliefs influence how teachers conceptualize teaching. Hence it is essential for teacher educators to understand the epistemological beliefs that pre-service teachers hold in order to foster mature epistemological outlooks among them that could facilitate educational reforms. This chapter reports a study that examines the profile of the epistemological and pedagogical beliefs of preservice teachers in Singapore and explores possible relationships among their beliefs, gender and subject domain. A total of 340 pre-service teachers took part in this study. The study found that pre-service teachers were generally relativistic in their epistemological outlooks. They also expressed strong belief in the constructivist approach to teaching and learning. Gender differences in epistemological and pedagogical beliefs were also detected. Based on the analysed epistemological and pedagogical profiles, the authors suggest the possible implications of the readiness among Singaporean pre-service teachers for constructivist-oriented educational reform.