Connecting Student Perceptions and Classroom Observations as Measures of Cognitive Activation

Jóhann Örn Sigurjónsson, Anna Kristín Sigurðardóttir, Berglind Gísladóttir, Jorryt Van Bommel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Which dimensions of instruction can be reliably captured using student perception surveys, is subject for debate. The aim of this study is to empirically explore the validity and limitations of two different measures of cognitive activation: systematic classroom observations and student perceptions. 34 video-recorded lessons from ten lower secondary mathematics teachers in Iceland were analysed using an observation system and compared to 217 responses to the Tripod student perception survey. The results indicate that for the cognitive activation dimension, the connection between observer ratings and student perceptions is weak, raising questions about the validity of different measures of instructional quality.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-346
Number of pages19
JournalNordic Studies in Education
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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