Teachers’ Beliefs, in the Context of Policy Reform

Helenrose Fives, Michelle M. Buehl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Teachers’ beliefs shape their practice. Beliefs, conceptions held with enough personal conviction to be considered true, serve as helpful heuristics for teachers embedded in the complex, ever-changing contexts of classrooms and schools. Three sets of beliefs appear essential to teaching practice, namely, beliefs about teaching, knowledge (epistemic beliefs), and students’ ability. Empirical research about these beliefs is reviewed in light of current U.S. policy documents of curriculum standards, the Common Core State Standards initiative and the Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas. Teachers’ beliefs filter, frame, and guide their perceptions and implementation of the new curriculum standards. Recommendations to policy makers, educational leaders, and teacher educators include allowing teachers to examine and reflect on their beliefs in light of reforms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-121
Number of pages8
JournalPolicy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • ability beliefs
  • epistemic beliefs
  • pedagogical beliefs
  • teachers’ beliefs


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