Aarhus University Seal / Aarhus Universitets segl

Video clubs

Naturfagslærere har brug for værktøjer til at undersøge elevernes læring

- for pre-service and in-service science teachers

As a primary and secondary school teacher in natural science you face a double challenge: The complex context in school is a working condition for all teachers, but science teaching also involves a very complicated subject matter.

Both new and experienced science teachers need “approaches and tools”, that can be applied in the study of their own and each other's practice and, not least, in the study of students' learning. The sharing of classroom video in so called video clubs has so far been reported by international research as a promising part of teachers' professional development with potential to support the important focus shift towards students' learning (e.g. Sherin & Han, 2004; Van Es & Sherin, 2008; Van Es, 2009).

The purpose

The purpose of this project is to develop and study the use of such “approaches and tools” in a Danish context. The research project runs from 2009 to 2012.

The project is running in collaboration with VIAUC teacher training college in Aarhus. The focus is how pre- and in service teachers can apply video clips from their own science teaching in collaborative professional development activities.

The project has so far lead to the implementation of two video clubs:

  • A video club fora team of science teachers at a local school in Aarhus
  • A video club for pre-service science teachers at the teacher training college in Aarhus - as a part of their Bachelor’s project.

Video club for a team of science teachers at a local school in Aarhus

Research questions in the school-based part of the project

In the context of a collaborative project in a science team, that uses artefacts in local classrooms to focus on students’ thinking and learning in science, the research questions are:

1)  How do individual teachers reflect on the project?
a.  What outcomes do they identify?
b.  Which aspects in the project do they refer to?

2)   What links do the teachers make between a and b (cf. above) and what insights do these provide into their meaning making?

3)   What ideas about teaching and learning science do the teachers express and how might these influence their meaning making?

The first results from the school based project were presented in June 2011 at the Nordic research symposium in science teaching (NFSUN) in Linköping, Sweden:

A paper about the project was accepted for the ESERA conference in September 2011:

A paper about the project has been published: 

  • Nielsen, B. L. (2012). Science teachers’ meaning-making when involved in a school based professional development project. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 23(6), 621-649.

In the data analysis of this project a so-called "meaning making model" has been used. Get the codebook used for the analysis here.

Video club for pre-service science teachers at the teacher training college in Aarhus

A group of pre-service science teachers have been facilitated in analyzing video from their teaching in school practice and to use these artifacts from practice in their final Bachelor's projects. In their analysis they have used a new tool for video analysis.

An extract of codes used by the student teachers is available here.

Research questions in this particular context have been:

1)   Do the student teachers' (ST) interpretation of their classroom experiences change after being involved in collaborative analytical workshops while making their Bachelor's project, and if so, how?

2)   What factors appear to influence changes?

3)   What do the STs themselves emphasize as outcomes from the collaborative video analysis?

4)   How are the STs' perceived outcomes mirrored in their emphasis in the project report?

The same ”meaning making model” has been used in analysis in this part of the project. Get the codebook used for the analysis here.

Codes for the "Domain of Consequence" are explained and exemplified here.