ERIC Number: EJ1171571
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
How Four Scientists Integrate Thermodynamic and Kinetic Theory, Context, Analogies, and Methods in Protein-Folding and Dynamics Research: Implications for Biochemistry Instruction
Jeffery, Kathleen A.; Pelaez, Nancy; Anderson, Trevor R.
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v17 n1 Article 13 Mar 2018
To keep biochemistry instruction current and relevant, it is crucial to expose students to cutting-edge scientific research and how experts reason about processes governed by thermodynamics and kinetics such as protein folding and dynamics. This study focuses on how experts explain their research into this topic with the intention of informing instruction. Previous research has modeled how expert biologists incorporate research methods, social or biological context, and analogies when they talk about their research on mechanisms. We used this model as a guiding framework to collect and analyze interview data from four experts. The similarities and differences that emerged from analysis indicate that all experts integrated theoretical knowledge with their research context, methods, and analogies when they explained how phenomena operate, in particular by mapping phenomena to mathematical models; they explored different processes depending on their explanatory aims, but readily transitioned between different perspectives and explanatory models; and they explained thermodynamic and kinetic concepts of relevance to protein folding in different ways that aligned with their particular research methods. We discuss how these findings have important implications for teaching and future educational research.
Descriptors: Biochemistry, Science Instruction, Scientific Research, Thermodynamics, Kinetics, Research Methodology, Scientists, Models, Interviews, Expertise, College Faculty, Scientific Concepts, Concept Formation, Qualitative Research
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Website: http://www.ascb.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: 1346567; 1503798