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ERIC Number: EJ1040048
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Feb
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 79
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0926-7220
Determinism and Underdetermination in Genetics: Implications for Students' Engagement in Argumentation and Epistemic Practices
Jiménez-Aleixandre, María Pilar
Science & Education, v23 n2 p465-484 Feb 2014
In the last two decades science studies and science education research have shifted from an interest in products (of science or of learning), to an interest in processes and practices. The focus of this paper is on students' engagement in epistemic practices (Kelly in "Teaching scientific inquiry: Recommendations for research and implementation". Sense Publishers, Rotterdam, pp 99-117, 2008), or on their practical epistemologies (Wickman in "Sci Educ" 88(3):325-344, 2004). In order to support these practices in genetics classrooms we need to take into account domain-specific features of the epistemology of genetics, in particular issues about determinism and underdetermination. I suggest that certain difficulties may be related to the specific nature of causality in genetics, and in particular to the correspondence between a given set of factors and a range of potential effects, rather than a single one. The paper seeks to bring together recent developments in the epistemology of biology and of genetics, on the one hand, with science education approaches about epistemic practices, on the other. The implications of these perspectives for current challenges in learning genetics are examined, focusing on students' engagement in epistemic practices, as argumentation, understood as using evidence to evaluate knowledge claims. Engaging in argumentation in genetics classrooms is intertwined with practices such as using genetics models to build explanations, or framing genetics issues in their social context. These challenges are illustrated with studies making part of our research program in the USC.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A