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ERIC Number: EJ771792
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Sep
Pages: 24
Abstractor: Author
ISSN: ISSN-0950-0693
Promoting Discourse about Socioscientific Issues through Scaffolded Inquiry
Walker, Kimberly A.; Zeidler, Dana L.
International Journal of Science Education, v29 n11 p1387-1410 Sep 2007
This case study investigated the implementation of an inquiry-based curricular unit that was designed to promote student discourse and debate on aspects related to the nature of science, using a socioscientific issue of genetically modified foods. Two high school science classrooms participated in the study that took place over seven consecutive 1.5-h period blocks. The researchers utilized qualitative procedures to analyze students' views on the nature of science as expressed through their answers to online and interview questions, and to examine features of argumentation and discourse in the final classroom debate. The students' answers to questions related to the nature of science reflected conceptions of the tentative, creative, subjective, and social aspects of science. Yet aspects of the nature of science did not enter into the debate discussions. Instead students utilized more factual-based content of the evidence that ultimately led into numerous instances of fallacious reasoning and personal attacks. These findings suggest that perhaps a socioscientific issues approach to exploring aspects of the nature of science should be designed so that students are moved beyond developing their nature of science conceptions to applying those conceptions within a decision-making context. (Contains 4 tables and 1 figure.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States