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ERIC Number: ED259956
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1984
Pages: 31
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Formation of Ecological Concepts and Conceptual Sytems by Upper Elementary Students.
Cothron, Julia H.; Thompson, Ertle
Science Curriculum Improvement Study (SCIS) students in grades 4-6 were used to investigate ecological concept formation. Researcher-designed, multiple-choice and free-sort tasks were administered. Statistics utilized included analysis of variance, Spearman correlation, multiple regression, frequency distributions, and latent partition analysis. Findings show that: (1) grade and ability, not sex, influenced concept attainment and similarity of conceptual system to discipline structure; (2) sequence of concept attainment was not influenced by grade, ability, or sex; (3) concept attainment was promoted by a conceptual system similar to the discipline structure; (4) sixth-graders recognized life requirements, interactions via food, mineral, gas exchange, and community groups, but not attributes of higher-order concepts (producer, consumer, decomposer, environmental factors); (5) discipline experts, not students, related examples to higher-order concepts. Recommendations for grades K-6 curriculum are to promote conceptual systems similar to discipline structure, to base concept maps upon lower-order concepts or attributes, to eliminate higher-order concepts, and to emphasize interactions of plants, animals, decayers, non-living materials, feeding relationships, and life requirements. (Author/JN)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A