Die rol van gevallestudies in die bevordering van selfgerigte leer in Ekonomie-onderrig op skool
Krugell, Johannes Frederik
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In the current fast-changing world, schools should provide learners with attitudes and competencies that would enable them to be self-directed learners in future. Formal education as it is practiced today does not afford learners the opportunity to be self-directed learners for the future. One of the reasons for this is that the transmission mode of teaching, which is still used in schools today, is no longer adequate for the fast-changing world with ever-increasing demands on young people. The traditional mode of teaching with a dominant teacher and the learner as a passive follower, results in a disadvantage for the learner. Learners become increasingly dependent on the teacher and only have a superficial grasp of the facts. This does not promote reflection of the learning material and it also does not promote the ability to become self-directed in learning. Current research indicates that active learning through social interaction is the best way to acquire and apply knowledge. If learners are actively involved with the learning content and have the opportunity to work with their fellow learners to compile knowledge by integrating theory and practice, they would acquire competencies that would enable them to develop into self-directed learners. Over time, researchers have developed a number of teaching—learning strategies that involve active learning as well as co-operative learning to develop self-directed learning. Case study teaching is one of the techniques in this regard. This study was about the role that case study teaching as teaching—learning technique could play to develop self-directed learning in Economics education. Three experimental schools (where learners did case studies) and two control schools (where learners did not do case studies) were used during the study, and the self-directed learning abilities of learners in the experimental schools were measured before and after the case study intervention. Learners in the control schools' view of their ability to be self-directed learners were determined in a pre-test and a post-test at the same time that learners in the experimental schools were measured. The main research question that directed this study was How, and to what extent, can the use of case studies promote self-directed learning in the teaching of Economics at school level? To find an answer to this question, a parallel mixed-methods triangulation research method was applied. Quantitative and qualitative data was collected at more or less the same time. The data was integrated and interpreted. Quantitative data was obtained from a valid and reliable test for self-directed learning in order to obtain learners' views on their ability to be self-directed learners. The test was applied before the case study intervention and again after the case study intervention (pre-test and post-test). The aim was to determine whether any changes had occurred in learners' views of their ability to be self-directed learners because of the case study intervention. Qualitative data was obtained from the application of six case studies that were applied in three schools in the J.B. Marks education district. The case studies were developed with the aim to focus on the complexities of the economy as well as the complexities of the current democratic South Africa by bringing in indigenous knowledge. A measurement of the ability of teachers in the experimental schools to apply active learning during the teaching of the six case study lessons was determined through the application of the Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol questionnaire by the researcher and through classroom observation. During the six case study lessons, the teachers' experiences were determined through personal interviews. The collected quantitative data was ordered and systematised and statistically analysed by applying the IBM SPSS v24 statistical package. The qualitative data was analysed with the aid of the cultural-historical activity theory (CHAT). Deductions were made from both data sets. Processing of the data showed that the views learners in the experimental schools had of their ability to be self-directed in their learning did not improve at the end of the case study intervention. The views learners in the control schools had of their ability to be self-directed learners had decreased to a small extent. The CHAT analysis showed certain tensions in and between the components of the activity system. The study had certain limitations that are explained in this thesis. In spite of the limitations, this study makes a contribution at epistemological level and also at practical and methodological level. Recommendations are made regarding case study teaching. The answer to the research question — How, and to what extent, can the use of case studies promote self-directed learning in the teaching of Economics at school level? — is that case study teaching in Economics education could play a role to promote self-directed learning. The problems indicated in this study are problems related to the training of teachers to teach case study lessons and the correct use of case study teaching. If teachers are trained to do case study lessons over a longer term and if case study teaching is supported by the education authorities and the school community, case study teaching in Economics education could make a meaningful contribution to self-directed learning.
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