An Analysis of Turkey's Recent Middle School Mathematics Teaching Programs Within the Context of the Learning-Teaching Processes

An Analysis of Turkey's Recent Middle School Mathematics Teaching Programs Within the Context of the Learning-Teaching Processes

Lutfi Incikabi (Kastamonu University, Turkey) and Ramazan Uysal (Kastamonu University, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1476-4.ch017

Abstract

The current study compares recent middle school mathematics teaching programs in Turkey based on teaching-learning processes (student characteristics, teacher characteristics, learning-teaching approaches, and measurement and evaluation approaches). Being qualitative in nature, this study was conducted by performing document analysis. The data source of this study comprises the middle school mathematics teaching programs published in 1998, 2005, and 2013. The obtained data were presented using tables and were compared in terms of similarities and differences. According to the results, programs since 1998 had provided different definition of an active student. Moreover, the use of strategies and techniques, which are student-centred and enable students to actively participate in the learning process, is striking since the 2005 program. In addition, the most important change in the measurement-evaluation processes is the adoption of the result- and process-oriented measurement and evaluation concept instead of the result-oriented measurement and evaluation approach.
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Introduction

Developments in science and technology have caused several changes in human life and have resulted in several unavoidable innovations. The changes and developments that have occurred in our daily life can be considered to be a consequence of the developments and changes in science and technology related to all areas of life (Uludağ, 2012). Education is one field that has been affected by these changes and developments. Developments in science and technology have affected the educational system and have caused the restructuring of educational programs. Several countries have restructured their education programs according to the models due to which individuals can create their own knowledge and access information (Bulut, 2004; Sulak et al., 2010). In accordance with the developments observed in the world, a few changes have been made in the teaching programs of our country as well, and new teaching programs have been prepared and implemented.

The effectiveness and success of the new programs can be achieved with the development of programs based on the results of the research made on the evaluations of the teachers, who implemented these programs, and the programs themselves (Butakın & Özgen, 2007; Akça, 2007). The implemented programs can be improved in accordance with the results of the studies performed by researchers about the programs. Because the programs exhibit a continuous and variable structure, they also include program improvement studies within themselves. Demirel (2015) defines program improvement as an aggregate of active relations among the elements of the program. Also Demirel indicates that there is an interaction between the objective, content, learning–teaching process and measurement-evaluation processes of the program and that a variation in one of these items will affect the others. Erden (1998), however, defines program improvement as restructuring of the program according to the evaluation results obtained through specific stages. In addition to the improvement of the programs in effect, they should also be evaluated in terms of the requirements of the individuals and the society, the developments in science and technology and the suitability with the subject area in accordance with these changes and developments (Özdemir, 2009). Assessment, which is the final stage of program development, is an important step and a continuous part of the program development studies. In addition to various objectives, such as determining the successes and deficiencies of students, exhibiting the efficacy of the used teaching method and evaluating the level of achievement of the education objectives, the assessment studies in education are also used to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the implemented program and the reasons for developing new programs (Doğan, 1997; Ministry of National Education [MoNE], 2005; Marsh & Willis, 2007). Assessment studies in education are performed to determine the learning levels and deficiencies of students in particular and, in general, the success of the program in effect. Thus, programs that shape the education processes of people should be developed and evaluated to obtain feedback about the manner in which the set objectives are achieved and to identify and address the problems that are encountered during the teaching process (Güven & İleri, 2006).

Education program is an arrangement of the learning experiences that are provided to individuals by conducting activities in or out of school in accordance with a plan. Teaching program, on the other hand, is a system of planned experiences that includes all the necessary activities for teaching a course to various individuals (Demirel, 2015). Successful teaching can be made possible with well-structured planning. For the planning of an effective learning–teaching process, we should, first of all, consider the topic that will be taught, the reason due to which and the manner in which the topic will be taught, the most appropriate methods, strategies and techniques for teaching and the manner in which optimal learning can be achieved (Dhand, 2008; Singh, 2008).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Change in Turkish Education: Changes in Turkish education system including changes in teaching programs, curricula, and/or schooling criteria.

Middle School Mathematics: Mathematics subjects that are directed to the students from the fourth grade to the eighth grade (the ages spanning from 11 to 14).

Teaching Programs: A program written by the commitiee approved by the ministry of education which determines the learning progress of each subject in all the stages of formal education. It is also the mechanism of experiences covering all activities planned to be provided to individuals at school or out of school in order to realize the objectives determined in line with the objectives of the education program in the courses at a certain level of education.

Teaching and Learning Processses: Application and evaluation processes of activities planned for gaining students a certain behavior defined in the teaching program.

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