Effects of Central Aspects of Pedagogical Content Knowledge on Student Competence Development: Findings in Accounting
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Through empirical studies in general education domains (mathematics: Baumert et al., 2010; science:
Cauet et al. 2015), researchers have already proven that teachers' pedagogical content knowledge
(PCK) is a central precondition for effective teaching (e.g. cognitive activation) and student
competence development. The present study investigates the impact of teachers? PCK on student
academic performance in accounting. Analyses are based on the theoretical model of PCK
established in the COACTIV study, which defines the three facets of PCK: ?knowledge of students?
cognition and typical student errors?, ?knowledge of tasks as instructional tools?, and ?knowledge of
multiple representations and explanations?.
In order to assess the facets of PCK in accounting 21 teachers were invited to take part in an online
questionnaire consisting of self-ratings and performance items. These 21 teachers took also part in
the so-called LOTUS study (Helm 2015). In that study the students of each of the 21 teachers
(Ngrade 9= 702, ageM = 14.4, ageSD = 0.74) were assessed annually by means of an accounting
competence test and an online questionnaire, measuring student perception of instructional aspects.
Using multi-level SEM, the data collected will be analysed to test the effects described above.
While competence-oriented teaching is negatively related to student academic performance in
accounting (r = -.275), teacher diagnostic competence (with regard to the knowledge of student
mental steps while solving accounting-specific tasks) is strongly and positively correlated with the
academic success of their students (r = .579*). Additionally, these facets, along with teacher
knowledge of didactical models and representational forms of concepts, correlate strongly with the
perceived cognitive activation in accounting lessons (r = .490* to .702**). Results will be discussed
critically against the limitations of the instrument used, as well as teacher training aspects.