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ERIC Number: EJ925662
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 98
ISSN: ISSN-0950-0693
What Teachers of Science Need to Know about Models: An Overview
Oh, Phil Seok; Oh, Sung Jin
International Journal of Science Education, v33 n8 p1109-1130 2011
The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the nature of models and their uses in the science classroom based on a theoretical review of literature. The ideas that science philosophers and science education researchers have in common about models and modelling are scrutinised according to five subtopics: "meanings of a model", "purposes of modelling", "multiplicity of scientific models", "change in scientific models" and "uses of models in the science classroom". First, a model can be defined as a representation of a target and serves as a "bridge" connecting a theory and a phenomenon. Second, a model plays the roles of describing, explaining and predicting natural phenomena and communicating scientific ideas to others. Third, multiple models can be developed in science because scientists may have different ideas about what a target looks like and how it works and because there are a variety of semiotic resources available for constructing models. Fourth, scientific models are tested both empirically and conceptually and change along with the process of developing scientific knowledge. Fifth, in the science classroom, not only teachers but also students can take advantage of models as they are engaged in diverse modelling activities. The overview presented in this article can be used to educate science teachers and encourage them to utilise scientific models appropriately in their classrooms. (Contains 1 table.)
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 - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A