Perception of Alabama Science and Career Technology Teachers Concerning Teaching the Alabama Aquaculture Course of Study
Type of Degreedissertation
Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures
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The purpose of this study was to improve teachers’ ability to effectively use aquaculture as a tool to teach math and science. The study population included Alabama science and career tech teachers that were certified to teach the Alabama aquaculture course of study. The teachers were electronically surveyed regarding their perceptions of the importance of the aquascience elective and aquaculture science course content standards, their knowledge of those topics and how they perceived the quality of available teaching materials. While all of the content standards were rated above average in importance, aquaculture career awareness and safety concerns were rated the highest by teachers. Teachers were most knowledgeable about career opportunities, categorization of aquaculture species, and the adaptations of aquatic organisms. The average materials ratings were below average for all content standards. The highest rated materials were for career opportunities, categorization of species and safety topics. Using Borich’s (1980) model of mean weighted discrepancy scores, the control of diseases and pests in the aquatic environment and concepts associated with health management of aquacrops were identified as top priorities for in-service teacher training. Aquaculture industry infrastructure and the effects of the fishing industry were also identified as priority training topics. iii Teachers were self-divided into 3 categories those that taught science (SCI), career tech (CTE) and those that taught both (BOTH). They were further divided by their level of experience. A multitvariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) revealed a significant effect between teacher types but there was no significant interaction effect between (a) teacher type and experience level or (b) the two levels of experience. A follow-up analysis of variance (ANOVA) indicated that the science teachers thought significantly less of the available materials than either the CTE or BOTH groups.