ERIC Number: EJ1126788
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Feb
Abstractor: As Provided
The Effect of Scaffolding Strategies for Inscriptions and Argumentation in a Science Cyberlearning Environment
Kern, Cindy L.; Crippen, Kent J.
Journal of Science Education and Technology, v26 n1 p33-43 Feb 2017
Scientific inscriptions--graphs, diagrams, and data--and argumentation are integral to learning and communicating science and are common elements in cyberlearning environments--those involving the use of networked learning technologies. However, previous research has indicated that learners struggle to use inscriptions and when they engage in argumentation, the learning of science content becomes secondary to the learning of argumentation skills. The purpose of this study was to evaluate two scaffolding strategies for these elements in a secondary school context: (1) "self-explanation prompts" paired with a scientific inscription and (2) "faded worked examples" for the evaluation and development of scientific arguments. Participants consisted of ninth and tenth grade students (age 13-16 years; N = 245) enrolled in state-mandated biology courses taught by four different teachers. A three-factor mixed model analysis of variance with two between factors (self-explanation prompts and faded worked examples) and one within factor (pre-, post-, delayed posttest) was used to evaluate the effects on the acquisition and retention of domain-specific content knowledge. Results indicated that neither strategy influenced the acquisition and retention of science content in a positive (i.e., learning) or negative (i.e., expertise reversal effect) way. Thus, general prompts were as effective as either of the scaffolding conditions. These unanticipated results suggest that additional research is warranted for learning scaffolds with pre-college populations where the gains were established with college-aged participants.
Descriptors: Scaffolding (Teaching Technique), Internet, Electronic Learning, Web Based Instruction, Persuasive Discourse, Grade 9, Grade 10, Biology, Science Teachers, Statistical Analysis, Science Education, Retention (Psychology), Prompting, Visual Aids, Secondary School Science, Secondary School Students, Computer Networks, Pretests Posttests
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Grade 9; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Secondary Education; High Schools; Grade 10
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: 0919123; 1006797