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Preferences for teaching styles matter in academic achievement: scientific and practical implications

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The two primary objectives of this study were: to identify the preferred teaching styles of secondary-school students and to compare these preferences with those of university students from past research; and to examine the contributions of students' preferred teaching styles to their academic achievement. A sample of 298 students from a Catholic boys' school completed the Preferred Thinking Styles in Teaching Inventory and the Self-rated Ability Scale. Participants' achievements in 12 school subjects were obtained. Results indicated great similarities between the preferred teaching styles of the present sample and those of university students in previous studies. Achievement scores in all 12 subjects were predicted by students' preferred teaching styles beyond their self-rated abilities. Some of these predictive relationships were domain-specific, while others were not. The findings' scientific and practical implications are discussed.

Keywords: academic achievement; preferences for teaching styles; style value

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Publication date: October 1, 2008

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