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ERIC Number: EJ895426
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1059-8650
Distributed Expertise in a Science Center: Social and Intellectual Role-Taking by Families
Zimmerman, Heather Toomey; Reeve, Suzanne; Bell, Philip
Journal of Museum Education, v33 n2 p143-152 Sum 2008
This research project examines the way that children and parents talk about science outside of school and, specifically, how they show distributed expertise about biological topics during visits to a science center. We adopt a theoretical framework that looks at learning on three interweaving planes: individual, social, and cultural (tools, language, worldviews, and artifacts). We analyze conversations to study how these three planes show learning processes as families work together to create explanations of biological phenomena. Findings include: (a) children and parents made epistemic moves that led to different social and intellectual roles in the conversations (skeptic, expert, memory-prompter), sometimes based on prior involvement in science activities; and (b) during extended scientific explanations about life science content, expertise in science was distributed across the family members and the museum environment so that the parents and children were both contributing to the conversation. (Contains 2 tables and 7 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A