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Issues in Educational Research, 2018, Vol 28(2), 405-421
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Mapping physical sciences teachers' concerns regarding the new curriculum in South Africa

Remeredzayi Gudyanga and Loyiso C. Jita
University of the Free State, South Africa

This article reports on a study investigating physical sciences teachers' stages of concern (SoC) profiles during the implementation of the curriculum and assessment policy statement (CAPS) in South Africa. Throughout reform implementation, it is conceivable that teachers go through different SoC, ranging from giving low priority to the reform (unconcerned stage) to being preoccupied about how they can improve the innovation (refocusing stage). Previous studies have not focused on mapping teachers' SoC profiles during reform implementation in South Africa. Using the concerns-based adoption model (CBAM), the SoC questionnaire (SoCQ) was conducted with 81 physical sciences teachers from 62 schools in a South African district in the fifth year of CAPS implementation. Self-concerns were found to be dominant among the participants. Multivariate analysis of variance showed no significant differences between teachers' SoC profiles and their years of experience with the reform. This suggests that any programs of support offered so far may have had no significant impact in shifting teachers' SoC profiles. The regular use of the SoCQ to monitor teachers' progression through different SoC is recommended. Programs addressing the teachers' dominant concerns may thus be developed based on these understandings, thereby increasing the chances of successful implementation.
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Authors: Dr Remeredzayi Gudyanga (corresponding author) is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow: Sanral Chair, in the Faculty of Education at the University of the Free State in South Africa. He has been involved with science education in Zimbabwe, Cuba, Namibia and the United States. His research interests include curriculum implementation, and history and philosophy of science.
Email: remegud@gmail.com, gudyangar@ufs.ac.za

Professor Loyiso Jita is the Dean of the Faculty of Education, University of the Free State, South Africa. He holds a PhD in curriculum studies, science teaching and education policy studies from Michigan State University, USA. His research interests lie in classroom reform and instructional leadership in science and mathematics education.
Email: jitalc@ufs.ac.za

Please cite as: Gudyanga, R. & Jita, L. C. (2018). Mapping physical sciences teachers' concerns regarding the new curriculum in South Africa. Issues in Educational Research, 28(2), 405-421. http://www.iier.org.au/iier28/gudyanga.pdf

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