Back in October, 2019, our paper titled Elementary Teachers’ Cognitive Processes and Metacognitive Strategies During Self-Directed Online Learning, sharing the results of the third phase of this study, was accepted for a paper session at the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Annual Meeting, scheduled to take place in San Francisco, CA in April 2020. Like so many things in 2020, the conference was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This would have been the second time the Canadian Financial Literacy Project team shared research at this leading educational research conference. This paper was authored by Dr. Pamela Beach, Jen McConnel and Dr. Gail Henderson.
The third phase of the study employed a “virtual revisit think aloud” method to study elementary teachers’ cognitive processes and meta-cognitive strategies using the Canadian Financial Literacy Database. Participants, who ranged in teaching experience from four to over 20 years, were asked to navigate the Database to find information related to their teaching practice. The navigation was recorded, and then participants immediately verbalized their thoughts to the researcher while viewing the screen recording. This “think aloud” was audio recorded and transcribed, and then coded for themes. These themes revealed that a focus on their students and classroom context guided teachers’ navigations. Participants also evaluated resources for trustworthiness and credibility. Two participants identified banks as trustworthy sources, while one participant specifically expressed concerns about the potential conflict of interest. These findings have important implications for future research on how teachers use online resources for professional development generally and specifically related to financial literacy education.