The educational reform movement since the 1990s has led the secondary earth science curriculum in Taiwan into a stage of reshaping. The present study investigated secondary earth science teachers' perceptions on the Goals of Earth Science Education (GESE). The GESE should express the statements of philosophy and purpose toward which educators direct their attention, and provide the visions or broad aims that earth science education is designed to achieve. Based on this rationale, the purpose of this study was to explore teachers' perceptions on the GESE at secondary school level (Grades 7–12) in Taiwan. A national survey of 1,000 earth science teachers was conducted in May 2004, with a response rate of 70.2%. The results revealed that ‘Students acquire basic earth science concepts’ is the most important GESE both in teachers' preferred goal and their actual teaching practice in the secondary earth science education; that there is a major gap between teachers' preferred and actual GESE in terms of ‘Preparing students for the entrance examinations’; and that the differences between teachers' preferred and actual GESE are contingent on the teachers' age, the school size, and the teacher education background of teachers.
International Journal of Science Education 31(17), pp.2315-2334