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Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS): Teacher Training and Skills in Assessing Science Learning

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Malaysia’s declining performance in TIMSS and PISA somewhat contributed to the transformation of Malaysian Education System which emphasizes on the importance of higher-order thinking skills (HOTS). Changes in how students are assessed imply that teachers must teach differently; the focus has shifted to developing students’ analytical abilities instead on mere recall and understanding. This study was conducted to investigate science teachers’ training and skills in assessing students’ HOTS. Thirty Science teachers were involved where data were qualitatively gathered using interview, observations and document analysis. The findings revealed that all teacher participants were aware of the shortcomings in their continuous professional development practices. The trainings they attended were rather general instead of specific to science teaching and learning activities, merely focused on developing HOTS items instead of on the variations and procedure of assessment, and did not adequately help them to inculcate critical and innovative thinking as well as creativity in student learning. Suggestions on how to improve teachers’ skills in assessing Science learning with specific emphasis on HOTS were also put forward as a mechanism to enhance teacher professionalism.
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Keywords: Higher Order Thinking Skills; School Based Assessment; Science Teacher; Teacher Training

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Science Education Department, Faculty of Education, Universiti Teknologi MARA Selangor, Puncak Alam Campus, 42300 Bandar Puncak Alam, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Publication date: April 1, 2017

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  • ADVANCED SCIENCE LETTERS is an international peer-reviewed journal with a very wide-ranging coverage, consolidates research activities in all areas of (1) Physical Sciences, (2) Biological Sciences, (3) Mathematical Sciences, (4) Engineering, (5) Computer and Information Sciences, and (6) Geosciences to publish original short communications, full research papers and timely brief (mini) reviews with authors photo and biography encompassing the basic and applied research and current developments in educational aspects of these scientific areas.
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