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ERIC Number: EJ1058689
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2002
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 17
ISSN: EISSN-1446-6120
Social Constructivism
Eastwell, Peter
Science Education Review, v1 n3 p82-86 2002
How do students' best learn in science? The traditional, teacher-centered view was that students, viewed as "empty vessels" waiting to be filled with new knowledge, "received" understanding by absorbing information supplied by teachers and found in written materials. Supplying information to students, without accounting for their existing beliefs, often doesn't do much to help ideas "make sense" to them, and learners frequently develop immature, incomplete, or even dual understandings. Meaningful learning occurs when new information is integrated within a coherent conceptual framework, and such integration requires existing knowledge to be extended and/or restructured. The idea of students actively constructing knowledge is not new, and many teachers have been constructivists long before they knew it! However, the theory of social constructivism does provide some useful recommendations for the classroom such as: (1) Connect learning with everyday contexts; (2) Elicit students' existing ideas; (3) Encourage students to take responsibility for their own learning; and (4) Use a variety of assessment techniques. A constructivist view can be a uniting view, because it can include so many strategies, like enquiry learning, cooperative learning, and science/technology/society learning.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A