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Teacher’s feedback in teaching science in a bilingual Bruneian primary classroom

Roslinawati Roslan (Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education, Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei)
Siti Munawirah Panjang (Ministry of Education Brunei Darussalam, Sekolah Rendah Sultan Abdul Bubin, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei)
Norashikin Yusof (Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education, Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei)
Masitah Shahrill (Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education, Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei)

On the Horizon

ISSN: 1074-8121

Article publication date: 23 July 2018

Issue publication date: 22 October 2018

406

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to analyze the use of feedback to students by a primary teacher teaching the science topic “Life Cycle” in a Year 5 bilingual Bruneian science classroom.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a discourse analysis of one primary science teacher’s use of feedback to his students when teaching the topic “Life Cycle.” The participant was a male primary science teacher who taught a Year 5 science class in one of the government schools in the Brunei-Muara district. Direct observations and video recordings of the teacher’s three consecutive lessons on the topic “Life Cycle” were collected. The transcripts were developed from the teacher–student interactions in the three lessons. The “Questioning-based Discourse” approach (Chin, 2006) was used to analyze the different types of feedback, and the students’ cognitive processes that emerged from the lesson transcripts. The frequencies of the feedback and students’ cognitive processes were calculated using percentages.

Findings

The findings from the three lesson observations indicate that the teacher’s feedback showed a range of strategies which consisted mostly of accepting students’ answers and feedback to elicit, to focus, to probe, to clarify and to extend, respectively. The findings also reveal that the cognitive processes of the students ranged from recalling, predicting, hypothesizing, evaluating and explaining. The analysis shows that the teacher only practiced low-level questioning and the feedback given to the students was mostly for accepting the students’ answers rather than challenging students’ ideas.

Practical implications

The findings reported in this study provide useful insights into the importance of teacher–student interactions in the teaching and learning of science. The “Questioning-based Discourse” analytical framework is worthwhile to analyze the science teacher’s talk and consequently to improve teachers” skills in giving feedback that fosters productive students’ responses.

Originality/value

This paper highlights the need for science teachers to analyze their classroom talk and it recommends how to give useful feedback to students to promote higher cognitive processes amongst students. Brunei has been described as a country where there is a linguistic divide determined by the quality of the school that a student attends (Deterding and Salbrina, 2013). Improving the quality of interaction between teacher and students in such circumstances is essential.

Keywords

Citation

Roslan, R., Panjang, S.M., Yusof, N. and Shahrill, M. (2018), "Teacher’s feedback in teaching science in a bilingual Bruneian primary classroom", On the Horizon, Vol. 26 No. 2, pp. 122-136. https://doi.org/10.1108/OTH-09-2017-0080

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

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