ERIC Number: EJ1026605
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Nov
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Framing Science in a New Context: What Students Take Away from a Student-Directed Inquiry Curriculum
Patchen, Terri; Smithenry, Dennis W.
Science Education, v97 n6 p801-829 Nov 2013
Student-directed inquiry in science is an important mechanism for helping students develop a repertoire of practices that reflects the work of real scientists. But few studies consider what students "take away" from this type of instruction, i.e., how strategies developed in such curricula transfer into other contexts. Our research addresses this gap by examining how strategies cultivated in a yearlong chemistry curriculum (the originating context) appeared (absent teacher intervention) in a new context with new peers. Dependent upon Lobato's actor-oriented transfer perspective (2006), this mixed-methods study deploys a multilevel analysis of video data collected in six physics classrooms (the new context) during a researcher-designed activity. Results show that absent teacher directives, two classes partially attempted to frame the physics inquiry using strategies cultivated in the original context, and one fully framed the new context using these strategies. This class's successful use of a specific focusing phenomenon (electing student managers) appeared as the key component in this full framing. Significantly, we found that a carefully designed inquiry curriculum can support students' capacity to (a) organize to work collaboratively, (b) communicate to engage all students in the inquiry investigation, and (c) conduct scientific work that meets disciplinary requirements.
Descriptors: Inquiry, Science Instruction, Teaching Methods, Chemistry, Physics, Cooperative Learning, Learner Engagement, Video Technology, Mixed Methods Research
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A