This study identified the process of interaction between students’ motivation and characteristics of two physics teachers: one who exhibited effective physics teacher characteristics frequently and one who exhibited the characteristics rarely. The two case teachers were selected to predict contrasting and comparable results. The data gathered from the semi-structured interviews, follow-up interviews, direct observation, video recordings, and field notes were analyzed both by single case and by cross-case analysis to strengthen the findings from two case teachers. Findings indicated that teachers’ characteristics like enthusiasm and giving examples from daily life increased students’ motivation by increasing their attention and willingness to participate in the classroom discussion. Even though a teacher frequently exhibited the effective characteristics by providing every opportunity for their learning, students wanted a classroom environment where they could stay calm and be more passive. The students did not like to be constantly forced by the teacher to share their views. In the lesson of a teacher who rarely exhibited the effective characteristics, students demanded a classroom environment where they could be more active. The students were not satisfied when their teacher avoided asking questions or had difficulty in solving the problems. Students, in general, resisted the teacher’s behaviors or characteristics when the teachers exhibited inconsistent behaviors.


Physics Education, Teacher Characteristics, Student Motivation, Multi-Case Study, Situated Motivation

Author Bio(s)

Associate Professor Dr. Fikret Korur (Corresponding Author) graduated from Physics Education Department of Middle East Technical University-Turkey. He got his MS and Ph.D degrees from the same university. His research interests include physics teacher characteristics, students’ motivation in physics, misconceptions in science/physics, concept teaching in physics, and online concept mapping in science and physics teaching. He worked as a physics teacher at a high school during 1997-2009. He has been working at Burdur Mehmet Akif Ersoy University since 2009. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Fikret Korur: fikretkorur@mehmetakif.edu.tr.

Professor. Dr. Ali Eryilmaz graduated from Physics Education Department, Physics & Mathematics Departments and got his MS degree from Middle East Technical University-Turkey. He got Ed.S degree from Florida Institute of Technology together with Ph.D. His multitudinous interests and publications are related to teaching and learning in physics, concept teaching in physics and science, misconceptions in physics, science/physics curriculum development, and physics teacher training. Prof. Dr. Ali Eryılmaz has been working at Middle East Technical University since 1996. Correspondence regarding this article can also be addressed directly to: eryilmaz@metu.edu.tr.


The authors would like to acknowledge and to express their deep appreciation to Professor Sally St. George (University of Calgary) for her valuable academic and conceptual editing.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.





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