The Epistemological Beliefs of Distance Education Students


The researchers have mostly emphasized the epistemological beliefs which were considered as significant in learning process along with the desire to reveal the nature of learning. Epistemological belief is defined as the “individuals’ subjective beliefs about what information means and how knowing and learning occur”. It is a fact that the teachers’ epistemological beliefs have important effect on the students’ learning process. Teachers are the models for the students with both their patterns of behavior and learning approaches. The aim of this study was to determine the epistemological beliefs of the students attending to pre-school education and English language teaching departments in distance education, besides it was attempted to investigate these beliefs in terms of certain variables, namely, gender, department and grade that the students attend, and their academic achievement level, lastly the education level of their parents. The study was conducted through a descriptive method and 697 pre-service teachers composed the sampling of the study. To collect data, “Epistemological Belief Scale”, which was developed by Schommer (1990) and adapted to Turkish by Deryakulu and Büyüköztürk (2002), was used. As a result, it was obtained that the epistemological beliefs of the students in distance education developed at low level. Additionally, it was found that the epistemological beliefs of the pre-service teachers differed in terms of gender, department, grade, academic achievement, education level of parents.