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ERIC Number: EJ1103932
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Jun
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0141-1926
Boundary-Work in Science Education: A Case Study of GM Food
Lin, Yin-Ling
British Educational Research Journal, v42 n3 p477-491 Jun 2016
The term "boundary-work" is used to refer to the constant effort to draw and re-draw the boundary of science; it has long been portrayed as constructed by the stakeholders of science to demarcate science from non-science to establish the authority of science. Twenty-nine semi-structured interviews were carried out with students from one university in England, originally to explore their views about genetically modified (GM) food. However, the distinctive repertoires adopted by students of natural science as opposed to humanities and social sciences were striking. As a result, the focus of this study shifted to examine the discourse students adopted to talk about a controversial scientific topic, using GM food as a case study. This paper shows that the boundary between scientific and non-scientific academic disciplines is heavily ingrained in university students' discourse and it is collectively constructed by both actors that are included in, and excluded from, the institution of science. The innate authority assigned to the institution of science is found to have deepened the gap between scientific and non-scientific disciplines. In this study, science disciplines were portrayed as coherent and consistent, following similar scientific methods and philosophy whereas humanities and social sciences disciplines were merely considered as "non-science" disciplines. Hence, this paper suggests the wide scope of science should be better recognised and acknowledged in the education system. Finally, this paper demonstrates that people's role in relation to the institution of science has an impact on their discourse about and, perhaps subsequently, their views towards, science and technology.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A