ERIC Number: EJ1050854
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Feb
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 95
More than Just Chemistry: The Impact of a Collaborative Participant Structure on Student Perceptions of Science
Patchen, Terri; Smithenry, Dennis W.
Research in Science Education, v45 n1 p75-100 Feb 2015
Researchers have theorized that integrating authentic science activities into classrooms will help students learn how working scientists collaboratively construct knowledge, but few empirical studies have examined students' experiences with these types of activities. Utilizing data from a comparative, mixed-methods study, we considered how integrating a complex, collaborative participant structure into a secondary school chemistry curriculum shapes students' perceptions of what constitutes "science." We found that the implementation of this participant structure expanded student perceptions of chemistry learning beyond the typical focus on science content knowledge to include the acquisition of collaboration skills. This support for the collaborative construction of knowledge, in addition to the appropriation of scientific content, establishes the conditions for what science educators and scientists say they want: students who can work together to solve science problems. Radical shifts towards such collaborative participant structures are necessary if we are to modify student perceptions of science and science classrooms in ways that are aligned with recent calls for science education reform.
Descriptors: Chemistry, Secondary School Science, Secondary School Students, Student Attitudes, Scientific Attitudes, Science Activities, Cooperative Learning, Comparative Analysis, Mixed Methods Research
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A