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ERIC Number: EJ1178046
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1029-8457
The Use of Discourse in Enabling Access Physics Students to Construct Meaning of Magnetic Field Patterns
Qhobela, Makomosela; Rollnick, Marissa
African Journal of Research in Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, v14 n3 p6-19 2010
This paper analyses discourse produced in a larger study aimed at encouraging students in Lesotho to talk the language of science as a meaningful way of learning. The paper presents a semiotic and activity based analysis of discourses of students learning to talk physics while enrolled in a pre-tertiary access programme. Prior to the access programme, the students had been exposed to a teacher-centred learning environment where minimal opportunities for talk were provided. The instruction strategy was designed using a four stage process of meaning making using a sociocultural framework. The four stages were conceptual foundation, conceptual initiation, conceptual formulation and conceptual application. The purpose of this paper is to identify elements of each stage of this process which enabled students to construct meaning of scientific concepts in electromagnetism. Three meaning making elements of instruction characteristic of the last three of the four stages were identified. At the conceptual initiation stage students explored the world of real objects for the first time and their talk was of an exploratory nature. At the conceptual formulation stage students constructed physics ideas and expressed these using words of others through ventriloquation. Finally, at the stage of conceptual application students applied their understanding of the concept to an unfamiliar situation in a manner that resulted in cross pollination of the concept between students.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Lesotho
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A