The teaching of Psychology to students in education: A program and its evaluation

Imhof, Margarete
Langfeldt, Hans-Peter
Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universit├Ąt,
Frankfurt, Germany

The study of psychology is a requirement within most programs in education, e.g., teacher training programs or general education programs. Typical challenges that are to be met as these courses are tailored towards non-majors include the selection of suitable topics, structure of the program, and issues in teaching methodology. The poster presents an overview of the introductory course and a retrospective student evaluation of this course. A sample of n = 577 students had been administered a questionnaire to provide feedback on their previous introductory class experience. Results show that students agree with the structured approach and an illustrative and hands-on teaching style, but that more needs to be done to help them understand how the issues relate to other aspects of their studies and to their prospective professional environment, e.g., as they see experience it during internships and practica. It is also of concern to the students that psychological theory finds some application in their own learning development, e.g., by discussing learning strategies. Suggestions for program development and teaching options comprise that the flexibility of the course be enhanced (e.g., by offering optional material for special interest) and that uses of psychological theories and findings are demonstrated more directly by referring to the students' learning experience.