Teachers’ conceptions of approaches to teaching: A Chinese perspective

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Teachers’ belief systems about the nature and purposes of a phenomenon such as teaching and learning influence strongly how they teach and what students learn and achieve. A sample of 891 Chinese middle school teachers from 15 middle schools in a province in China responded to a 48-item questionnaire which explored their conceptions of approaches to teaching. Confirmatory factor analysis was utilised to generate a model of approaches to teaching. This model comprised five factors, namely, Being Authorities and Teacher-centred, Focusing on Examination Practices, Developing Life-long Learners, Engaging Students in Learning, Being Responsible for Teaching and Home Connections. Differences in approaches to teaching were associated with various teacher characteristics including sex, age, teacher certificate and the year level they taught. The results strongly indicated a reliance on traditional Chinese teaching, but also identified some more student-centred teaching in Chinese middle schools. Implications for teaching improvement and professional development are discussed. Copyright © 2014 De La Salle University.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-351
JournalThe Asia-Pacific Education Researcher
Issue number2
Early online dateApr 2014
Publication statusPublished - 2015


Chen, J. (2015). Teachers’ conceptions of approaches to teaching: A Chinese perspective. The Asia-Pacific Education Researcher, 24(2), 341-351.


  • Middle school
  • Approaches to teaching
  • Chinese education
  • Confirmatory factor analysis


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