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ERIC Number: EJ1178062
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1029-8457
'They Are Using Laptops, We Are Using Boxes': Township Learners' Conceptions of Expo
Taylor, Dale
African Journal of Research in Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, v15 n1 p67-79 2011
The purpose of this study was to explore the motivation of a group of township learners who participated in a science fair known as Expo, by using phenomenography to explore their conceptions and experiences of Expo. The data comprised paragraphs written by the learners before the regional Expo and focus group interviews conducted afterwards. The analysis revealed that the learners participated because they saw Expo as giving them a chance of success, conceptualized in terms of present or future goals as measured against a criterion or relative to others. However, their experience of Expo left them with a sense of failure. They accounted for this perceived failure in terms of inherent weaknesses with their projects and external factors, such as lack of access to resources and help from adults. They could see little connection between Expo and their classroom experience of science, despite the relevance of Expo projects to one of their science curriculum outcomes. The results of this study suggests that Expo may not be the best vehicle for encouraging learners from historically disadvantaged schools to participate in science, given the significant disparity in access to resources and knowledge across different types of schools in South Africa. At the same time, the agency and initiative of the study group suggest fertile ground for the Youth into Science Strategy.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A