ERIC Number: ED441680
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2000
Changing Elementary Teachers' Views of the NOS: Effective Strategies for Science Methods Courses.
Dickinson, Valarie L.; Abd-El-Khalick, Fouad S.; Lederman, Norman G.
This study assesses the influence of a set of activities developed based on preservice elementary science teachers' conceptions of the nature of science (NOS). It also compares the effectiveness of these activities when implemented using two approaches. The first approach was a direct explicit approach while the second featured additional reflective components. The reflective components included written and oral discussions about the elements of the nature of science throughout the courses in the second cohort. Results show that prior to instruction, most students in both cohorts believed in a single scientific method that guarantees the objectivity of scientists and scientific knowledge. All students held either an hierarchical view of the relationship between scientific theories and laws or believed that laws were well-supported, proven, or true while theories were not. Following instruction, 3 of the 35 students in the first cohort expressed more adequate views about the empirical nature of science. In comparison, half the students in the second cohort emphasized the role of evidence in setting science apart from other disciplines of inquiry. Appendices outline the activities: (1) Wind Activity Sequence; (2) Temperature Activity Sequence; (3) Water Cycle Activity Sequence; and (4) Weather Trends Activity Sequences. (Contains 20 references.) (CCM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A