Teacher preparation impacts in regard to physiological stress of preservice educators within agricultural mechanics project construction
The purpose of this study was to identify how the differences in teacher preparation impact the physiological stress teachers and teaching quality students experience within the agricultural mechanics laboratory setting, specifically when related to project construction. One specific responsibility of agricultural educators is teaching project construction in the agricultural mechanics laboratory. Teachers have reported perceived stress in teaching agricultural mechanics, but no studies to date have measured the physiological stress response when teaching mechanics. For this agricultural mechanics methods course, university instructors enlisted students to serve as teacher for a day to simulate the process of teaching project construction. Researchers utilized a nonequivalent control group design to determine how a treatment of university supervisors modeling the project construction with students before they taught as teacher for day would impact teaching and stress outcomes. The control group did not build the project ahead of time, as has been the practice of the course in the past. The researcher utilized four instruments to measure physiological stress, learning environment, assessment, teaching delivery and perceived comfort of the teacher. The target population for this study was preservice agricultural educators at the University of Missouri. The accessible population consisted of preservice educators for the Fall of 2017 semester (n=16). Heart monitor data indicated all teachers were stressed throughout their teaching on day 1 and day 2. Despite their stress, the teachers were effective as rated by their students. The treatment group was less stressed on day 2 than day 1, indicating the treatment was effective at assisting teachers once the actual project construction began. The study provides biological evidence supporting the stressful nature of teaching agricultural mechanics. Researchers were able to recreate the stress of agricultural mechanics teaching through a simulated activity. Researchers conclude the treatment of pre-project modeling reduced the stress and increase the teaching performance of preservice teachers by modeling the laboratory activity prior to teaching.