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ERIC Number: EJ955903
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 52
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1050-8406
Deepening Students' Scientific Inquiry Skills during a Science Museum Field Trip
Gutwill, Joshua P.; Allen, Sue
Journal of the Learning Sciences, v21 n1 p130-181 2012
Field trips to science museums can provide students with educational experiences, particularly when museum programs emphasize scientific inquiry skill building over content knowledge acquisition. We describe the creation and study of 2 programs designed to significantly enhance students' inquiry skills at any interactive science museum exhibit without the need for advanced preparation by teachers or chaperones. The programs, called Inquiry Games, utilized educational principles from the learning sciences and from visitor studies of museum field trips. A randomized experimental design compared 2 versions of the games to 2 control conditions. Results indicate that the groups that learned the Inquiry Games significantly outperformed the control groups in the duration and quality of several inquiry skills when using a novel exhibit, with effect sizes ranging from 0.3[sigma] to 0.8[sigma]. The highest gains came from an Inquiry Game that was structured and collaborative rather than spontaneous and individualized. Students and chaperones in all conditions reported enjoying the experience. These results mirror those found in a previous study in which family groups learned the Inquiry Games. (Contains 14 footnotes, 9 tables and 13 figures.)
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 - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A