NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED521047
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 117
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1242-2781-8
Young Children's Conceptions of Science and Scientists
Lee, Tiffany R.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Washington
This study explores young children's images of science and scientists, their sources for scientific knowledge, and the nature of their science-related experiences. A cross-sectional design was used to study how students' ideas differ over the first three years of elementary school. A modified version of the Draw-a-Scientist Test (DAST) and a semi-structured interview were administered to beginning kindergarten, first grade, and second grade students to document and compare how students' conceptions of and experiences with science differ over the first three years of elementary school. Quantitative and qualitative analyses of the data reveal that young children come to school with vast amounts of knowledge about the natural world. However, a significant shift in children's conceptions of science and scientists occurs over the first two years of school. These data suggest that young children's images of science and scientists are broad and still malleable at the beginning of elementary school, but they slowly begin to narrow and become more stereotypic by the end of first grade. Through observations and interactions with people, the living world, media, formal schooling, and other everyday activities, young children continue to negotiate their conceptions about science. This research informs the dialog on young children's science learning and provides a more holistic account of young children's science learning. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 1; Grade 2; Kindergarten
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A