Beliefs About Text and Instruction With Text
Edited by Ruth Garner, Patricia A. Alexander
Routledge – 1994 – 344 pages
Every day in classrooms, teachers and students think about and with text. Their beliefs about what text is, who created it, and how to evaluate it are an influence, often a profoundly important one, on how they use text. This book brings together research on epistemology, belief systems, teacher beliefs, and text -- research that is usually presented separately, and in different disciplines. The editors illustrate what a cross-disciplinary body of work looks like, what varied insights are possible, and when the central concerns are beliefs and text.
Written by respected researchers in the fields of psychology and education, the chapters are clustered thematically into three sections:
* childrens' and adults' beliefs about text.
* beliefs about what should be taught and how particular content should be taught and assessed in classrooms.
* commentary on knowing versus believing, on the literatures that inform this body of work, and on belief systems.
The first to address this important topic in a single volume, this book provides an essential synthesis of current research in an active area of inquiry. The chapters are pieces framed in a time and place with particular intentions -- one of those intentions is that they separately and as a whole stimulate discussion about beliefs and text.
"The editors have used multiple sources to develop this exciting look at beliefs about text….A must for all education graduate students."
"Garner and Alexander have tapped the creativity of highly respected researchers and teacher educators in this volume. The volume includes a wonderfully rich variety of chapters that will provoke the imagination of anyone interested in thinking deeply about the construction of knowledge from texts….The chapters are intriguing because they probe uncharted areas and raise new questions that go beyond cognitive analyses of literacy comprehension and instruction. The book contains fascinating information about the beliefs that people hold and the understanding they construct about street texts, nonlinear text, and even research studies as texts. Some authors examine how the personal beliefs of researchers shape their studies and interpretations and others probe how the beliefs of teachers influence their instructional practices. Fascinating, bold, and refreshing -- these chapters will stimulate exciting new directions of inquiry in literacy research and practice."
—Scott G. Paris
The University of Michigan
"What are beliefs? What is text? What do beliefs about text have to do with thinking, learning, and teaching? Beliefs About Text and Instruction With Text addresses these important questions in a timely, ground-breaking volume. No dull, scholarly treatise this--rather, a creative, highly engaging, and immensely informative collection of diverse perspectives on the intersection of affect and cognition, epistemology and learning, beliefs and instruction. If you're thinking of texts as a linear array of graphic symbols, think again. In this volume, texts are as varied as a documentary film series on the Civil War, electronic hypertext, classroom discussions, and flyers distributed on the street. The examined beliefs include those of first graders in writing classrooms, adolescents in a summer employment training project, feminist researchers, classroom teachers, and 'ordinary people.' Through these compelling chapters, you will become a believer in the need to bring the study of beliefs into work on learning and instruction. The volume by Garner and Alexander is a powerful beginning."
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Contents: J.P. Williams, Foreword: The Importance of Examining Beliefs About Text. Preface. Part I:Children's, Adolescents', and Adults' Beliefs About Text. R. Horowitz, Adolescent Beliefs About Oral and Written Language. M. Schommer, An Emerging Conceptualization of Epistemological Beliefs and Their Role in Learning. S.B. Nolen, N. Johnson-Crowley, S.S. Wineburg, Who Is This "I" Person, Anyway? The Presence of a Visible Author in Statistical Text. R. Garner, R. Hansis, Literacy Practices Outside of School: Adults' Beliefs and Their Responses to "Street Texts." M.J. Chambliss, Why Do Readers Fail to Change Their Beliefs After Reading Persuasive Text? Part II:Teachers' Beliefs About Text and Instruction With Text. P.L. Peterson, Research Studies as Texts: Sites for Exploring the Beliefs and Learning of Researchers and Teachers. E. Hutton, J. Spiesman, V. Bott, Emerging Epistemologies of Text: Learning to Treat Texts as Human Creations in a "Writing Classroom." P.L. Anders, K.S. Evans, Relationship Between Teachers' Beliefs and Their Instructional Practice in Reading. H. Borko, K.H. Davinroy, M.D. Flory, E.H. Hiebert, Teachers' Knowledge and Beliefs About Summary as a Component of Reading. D.E. Alvermann, M. Commeyras, Gender, Text, and Discussion: Expanding the Possibilities. M.G. Gillingham, M.F. Young, J.M. Kulikowich, Do Teachers Consider Nonlinear Text to Be Text? Part III:Issues in Research on Beliefs About Text. P.A. Alexander, F.J.R.C. Dochy, Adults' Views About Knowing and Believing. J.A. Dole, G.M. Sinatra, Social Psychology Research on Beliefs and Attitudes: Implications for Research on Learning from Text. S. Wade, A. Thompson, W. Watkins, The Role of Belief Systems in Authors' and Readers' Constructions of Texts. C.E. Weinstein, A Look to the Future: What We Might Learn From Research on Beliefs.