Why Geography Learning: Candidate Teachers’ Views for Geography
Keywords:Geography, Geography Course, Teaching Geography, Preservice Teachers, Learning Necessity
The aim of this study is to reveal the status of the geography course among other courses as perceived by teacher candidates, the way they use their geographic knowledge in daily life, what their expectations are from geography courses, and to determine their opinions about the necessity of learning geography and their suggestions for teaching geography. The phenomenology design, one of the qualitative research methods, was adopted in the study. The study group consisted of 94 preservice teachers studying in the Social Studies Education and Primary Education Program of the Cumhuriyet University Faculty of Education in the 2017-2018 academic year. While determining the study group, maximum diversity, which is one of the purposive sampling methods, was used and care was taken to make this selected group of interviewed participants to be representative of the department, age and gender proportion of the preservice teachers. Content analysis and descriptive analysis were used together in the interpretation of the data obtained from the interviews with the preservice teachers. The collected data revealed that the majority of the teacher candidates place the geography courses among the top level/important and necessary courses. According to the preservice teachers, learning geography is necessary for the effective national administration and homeland defense, instilling the love for the homeland, associating phenomena with daily life, gaining knowledge about the near and far environments, creating an awareness of co-existence, gaining a general culture, loving and preserving the natural environment, establishing links between natural and human-made formations and between their causes and consequences.