NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1109826
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Sep
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0022-4308
Examining Evidence Construction as the Transformation of the Material World into Community Knowledge
Manz, Eve
Journal of Research in Science Teaching, v53 n7 p1113-1140 Sep 2016
Recent consensus documents in science education (e.g., the Next Generation Science Standards) emphasize helping students develop facility with constructing and critiquing both claims and the evidence that supports them. While students typically view evidence as necessary for supporting scientific claims, they tend to "objectify" evidence, that is, they see it as self-evident and factual, rather than as constructed or open to interpretation (Driver, Leach, Miller, & Scott, 1996; Sandoval & Çam, 2011). In this paper, I introduce a perspective from the science studies literature--evidence construction as transformation--that might usefully guide closer analyses of students' work with evidence. I describe the problem of objectification of evidence and how it has been studied, developing an argument for studying in greater detail how evidence is constructed by classroom communities over the course of their work with investigations. The remainder of the paper shows how one framework was developed for this purpose and describes how it was applied to an empirical investigation conducted in a third grade classroom to understand what work was done to construct evidence and what roles teachers and students were playing in this work. I argue that this framework makes visible three important aspects of evidence construction: what epistemic work is done to construct evidence, whom this work is meaningful to, and what it is meaningful for. I end the paper by exploring potential implications for understanding the construction of an explanation in community activity, the development of students' facility with evidence construction, and the teacher's role in facilitating the construction of evidence.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 3; Primary Education; Elementary Education; Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A