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ERIC Number: ED550414
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 301
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2678-2377-9
Preservice Elementary Teachers' Use of a Discursive Model of Meaning Making in the Co-Construction of Science Understanding
Boyer, Elisebeth C.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, The Pennsylvania State University
This research investigates how three preservice elementary teachers were prepared to teach science using a Discursive Model of Meaning Making. The research is divided into two parts. The first consists of the nature of the participants' learning experiences in a science methods course within a school-university Professional Development School partnership. This part of the investigation used Constant Comparative Analysis of field notes gathered through participant observation of the methods course. The analysis investigated how the methods instructors employed productive questioning, talk moves, and a coherent research based Teaching Science as Argument Framework. The second part of the study consisted of an investigation into how the participants applied what they experienced during the methods course in their initial science teaching experiences, as well as how the participants made sense of their initial science teaching. Data consisted of teaching videos of the participants during their initial science teaching experiences and self-analysis videos created by the participants. This part of the research used Discourse Analysis of the teaching and self-analysis videos. These inquiries provide insight into what aspects of the methods course were taken up by the participants and how they made sense of their practices. Findings are: 1) Throughout the methods course, instructors modeled how the Teaching Science as Argument Framework can be used to negotiate scientific understanding by employing a Discursive Model of Meaning Making. 2) During lesson plan conferences the Discursive Model was emphasized as participants planned classroom discussion and explored possible student responses enabling them to anticipate how they could attempt to increase student understanding. 3) Participants displayed three distinct patterns of adoption of the Teaching Science as Argument Framework (TSAF), involving different discursive practices. They were, *Detached Discursive Approach: Use of some discursive strategies without an apparent connection to the TSAF. *Connected Approach with a Focus on Student Thinking: Intentional use of the Discursive Model informed by aspects of the TSAF. *TSAF Approach: Priority is given to the TSAF supported by substantial application of the Discursive Model. 4) The evidence participants chose to highlight in their self-analysis videos is reflective of their patterns of adoption of the Teaching Science as Argument Framework and their differing discursive practices. Analysis led to the formation of the middle theory that when learning to teach science in the elementary school, teacher commitment to the discourse and practices of science is constructed through participation in a learning community where a discursive model of meaning making is the norm. Curricular and methodological implications, as well as implications for future research are presented. [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: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A