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ERIC Number: EJ1164787
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Sep
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1089-9995
Commentary: Fostering Students' Argumentation Skills in Geoscience Education
Trend, Roger
Journal of Geoscience Education, v57 n4 p224-232 Sep 2009
This paper considers opportunities for teachers to use an argumentation pedagogy in order to develop students' geoscience thinking skills. Educational argumentation principles and procedures are outlined. Argumentation can foster both student and teacher motivation and interest in the context of accessible and well-structured geoscience content. Geoscience lends itself to an argumentation approach because of its physical and intellectual accessibility, its concern with "socio-scientific" ideas, its operation on scales readily understood by children and its regular occurrence in mass media reports. Students need to learn how to construct an argument, supported by evidence, and to learn from counterarguments. Argumentation involves both cognitive and affective skills of both teachers and students. It can be used to help children understand not merely the socio-cultural aspects of science but also basic science concepts and processes. A geosciences argumentation pedagogy is exemplified using coastal evolution: argumentation procedures and protocols are illustrated and explained. Four other potential opportunities in geoscience education are summarised in tabular form. The paper concludes by emphasising the critical role of epistemological understanding: it cannot be ignored.
National Association of Geoscience Teachers. Carleton College W-SERC, One North College Street, Northfield, MN 55057. Tel: 540-568-6675; Fax: 540-568-8058; e-mail:; Website:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A