Zainudin, Eti Fairudz (2012)
M.Phil. thesis, University of Birmingham.
Malaysian secondary schools learning profiles in classrooms in Malaysian Secondary Schools. The study adopted Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence (MI) theory as a base. The teachers’ perceptions and expectations of their students’ learning profiles were compared to the students’ perception of their own learning profiles in two research study phases. The first phase took place before teachers and students were informed about students’ MI profiles while the second phase investigated what happened to these perceptions after the information has been supplied.
The rationale of the study was prompted by the need to look at ways in which preconceived ideas about the students’ learning profiles may affect students’ learning in the Malaysian classroom context. Past research has informed us that teachers’ perceptions and beliefs are likely to have significant implications for students’ perceptions, learning approaches and outcomes (Marton & Booth, 1997; Prosser & Trigwell, 1999; Meighan & Harber, 2007).
This research study is mainly qualitative and used these methods of data collection: semistructured interviews, quiz-questionnaire (QQ), and observation. The study was carried out in two suburban secondary schools in Kajang, Selangor, with 142 student participants for the QQ and a total of 36 teachers and students for the interview, group discussions and observations.
The findings show that there are several factors that help or obstruct the students’ and teachers’ metacognition to understand the students’ MI profiles. Teachers tend to essentialise and assign labels within the students as factors. The issue of ethnic labelling which characterises the Malaysian context was highlighted by both teachers and students as a factor with significant influence on the students’ learning. Importantly, teachers and students acknowledge MI as an essential catalyst for meaningful learning. Nonetheless, this study provides evidence that teachers showed a degree of unwillingness to use the information on students’ learning profiles in students’ learning.
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