Reliability and Validity Study of the Students' Motivation toward Science Learning (SMTSL) Questionnaire

Reliability and Validity Study of the Students' Motivation toward Science Learning (SMTSL) Questionnaire,Hülya YILMAZ,Pinar HUYUGÜZEL ÇAVA

Reliability and Validity Study of the Students' Motivation toward Science Learning (SMTSL) Questionnaire  
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The purpose of this study was the adaptation of "Students' Motivation Toward Science Learning (SMTSL)" questionnaire which is developed by Tuan, Chin & Shieh (2005) to Turkish language and testing validity and reliability of its. The original questionnaire was in English and consists of six factors including 35 items. Firstly, questionnaire were translated into Turkish and in order to asses the face validity of the translated items, questionnaire was sent to nine experts who are studying in the fields of science education, testing and evaluation and foreign languages and it was improved based on their feedbacks. This Turkish version of questionnaire was applied 659 students enrolled at 6th, 7th and 8th grades of 6 different primary schools. Principal Components Analysis (PCA) was conducted to examine the construct validity of the scale and as a result of the factor analyses, 2 items were deleted from the scale. A science attitude questionnaire was used to establish criterion-related validity and it is found that two questionnaires were significantly correlated with each other (r=0,73). Cronbach alpha reliability coefficients were calculated to determine reliability of the tool and the all sub-dimensions. These findings revealed that Turkish version of the SMTSL is a valid and reliable instrument that can be used to measure students' motivation toward science learning SUMMARY Purpose and Significance: The goal of the new Science & Technology curriculum is to enhance all students' scientific literacy and to help them understand science and the nature of science, to grasp basic science concepts, to realize the relationships between science, technology, society and environment and the importance of them, to get scientific attitudes and values, and to willingly continue their science studies both at school and out of school. Therefore, it is very important to focus on the effect of the affective components in science education research. One of these components is the motivation and students' motivation plays crucial role in their science learning, conceptual change process, critical thinking process and scientific process skills. Thus, it is important to measure students' motivation toward science learning and for this reason a SMTSL questionnaire was developed by Tuan, Chin & Sheh in 2005. This questionnaire consists of 6 factors which are: Self-efficacy, Active learning strategies, Learning environment stimulation, Performance goal, Achievement goal and Science learning value. The purpose of this study was to adopt SMTSL from English to Turkish and test its validity and reliability. Methods: In this research, survey method was used to reveal primary students' motivation toward science learning and a SMTSL was conducted for data collection. The sample of the study was 659 primary students who were enrolled at 6th, 7th and 8th grades and 51 % of whole was female, 49 % of was male. Quantitative data analysis was done by using SPSS 13.0 for Windows. Principal Component Analysis, item-total correlation and criterion-related were conducted to establish validity of the questionnaire. For testing reliability of the whole questionnaire and the all sub-dimensions, Cronbach Alpha coefficients were calculated. Results: Results of factor analysis and item-total correlation indicated that Turkish version of SMTSL consists of 6 factors and 33 items. Cronbach alpha reliability coefficient for the six factors of the SMTSL questionnaire was found to range from .54 and .85 and for the whole scale .87. Independent samples t-test was conducted to compare the SMTSL scores for males and females. There was significant difference in score for males (M= 130,39, SD= 17.21) and females (M= 133,76, 16.07; t(657)= 2,59, p= .01). These results indicated that females have higher science motivation than males. Discussion and Conclusions: The results showed that Turkish version of SMTSL questionnaire is a valid and reliable questionnaire which can be used to reveal students' motivation toward science learning. It is thought that this questionnaire will be useful for science educators who want to study about factors affecting students' motivation in science courses and other variables that can affect these factors. In the following studies, it is planned to investigate the relationships among variables such as students' motivation toward science learning and attitudes toward science, and science achievement, and learning styles.
Published in 2007.
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