Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Education


Curriculum and Instruction PhD

First Advisor

Lee Davidson

Second Advisor

Tammy Overstreet

Third Advisor

Jimmy Kijai


This research study investigated the perceived value of reflection among in-service teachers in Ontario, Canada. The surveys were randomly distributed to 140 teachers within the Toronto District School Board (TDSB; the largest school board in Canada). The teachers all had Ontario teaching certification, were surveyed at their current school, and had taught from one to 35 years. I investigated to what extent in-service teachers engage in reflective thinking, specific aspects of the teaching process that teachers reflect about, and sought to determine whether engagement in reflective thinking is related to years of teaching experience, elementary teaching levels (primary, junior, intermediate), and teacher preparation programs. The data were collected using the Perceived Value of Reflective Thinking Survey created by Dr. Sarah Russback (2006), and the data were evaluated and analyzed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) 22.

In this study, self-reflection was regarded as a useful practice by most in-service teachers. The participants had a highly positive perception of improving as an overall reflective practitioner, neutral perceptions of reflecting through the writing process, and moderate perceptions of barriers of personal reflection. They also reflected moderately often on the eight aspects of the teaching process (student level of understanding, student engagement, future goals, classroom management, student assignments, pedagogy, assessment practices, and student grades). However, there was no significant relationship between engagement or reflective thinking and teaching level and years of teaching. I recommend that further research be conducted involving both pre-service and in-service teachers who teach at all levels.

Subject Area

Critical thinking--Canada--Ontario; Elementary school teachers--Canada--Ontario; Public schools--Canada--Ontario