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ERIC Number: EJ939396
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 23
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9266
Students' Interest in Biology and Their Out-of-School Experiences
Uitto, Anna; Juuti, Kalle; Lavonen, Jari; Meisalo, Veijo
Journal of Biological Education, v40 n3 p124-129 2006
Interest in biology and the out-of-school experiences of Finnish secondary school pupils (n = 3626, median age 15) were surveyed in the spring of 2003 using the international ROSE questionnaire. Likert-scaled items were categorised with an explorative factor analysis. The scores of eight interest-context factors and seven out-of-school experience factors were studied. More boys than girls were interested in basic processes in biology, whilst more girls than boys found human biology and health education interesting. Out-of-school nature experiences were the most important factor correlating with interest in biology. Out-of-school experiences in science and technology-related activities, such as using science kits and constructing models, had the highest correlation with an interest in basic processes in biology, such as ecology, cell biology and genetics. Out-of-school experiences of caring for farm animals correlated with an interest in applied biology, such as agriculture. Experiences linked to design and technology, or information technology, were the least important factors to correlate with any studied interest contexts. Thus to enhance pupils' interest in learning more about biology and the living environment in general, it is important to put more emphasis on pupils' out-of-school nature experience and their engagement in informal learning in contextual outdoor environments. (Contains 6 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland