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ERIC Number: EJ1160721
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Dec
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0022-4308
The Effects of Visualizations on Linguistically Diverse Students' Understanding of Energy and Matter in Life Science
Ryoo, Kihyun; Bedell, Kristin
Journal of Research in Science Teaching, v54 n10 p1274-1301 Dec 2017
Although extensive research has shown the educational value of different types of interactive visualizations on students' science learning in general, how such technologies can contribute to English learners' (ELs) understanding of complex scientific concepts has not been sufficiently explored to date. This mixed-methods study investigated how interactive dynamic and static visualizations embedded in web-based inquiry instruction can support ELs and non-ELs in developing a coherent understanding of energy and matter transformations in life science. A total of 331 seventh-grade ELs and non-ELs were randomly assigned to a dynamic or a static visualization condition. During inquiry instruction, students in the dynamic group explored interactive dynamic visualizations of energy and matter transformations; students in the static group explored static, yet otherwise equivalent, interactive visualizations. The results show that, while both forms of visualizations were beneficial for students, dynamic visualizations had significant advantages for improving all students' understanding of the target concepts. Our analyses of video data revealed that ELs and non-ELs in the dynamic condition engaged in more talk turns to interpret the scientific phenomena using both visual and textual representations, whereas ELs and non-ELs in the static condition appeared to rely on textual information to obtain new ideas about the scientific phenomena from the visualization. Compared to the static group, students in the dynamic group also more successfully evaluated and consolidated a range of ideas to develop coherent scientific explanations using evidence from the visualization. This study provides evidence that interactive dynamic visualizations have promise for supporting science learning for all students, including ELs who are often underserved in mainstream science classrooms.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 7
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A