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ERIC Number: EJ1190566
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0950-0693
Secondary Students' Modelling Conceptualisation in Situations Related to Particle Dynamics: A Clinical Perspective
Machado, Juliana; Braga, Marco
International Journal of Science Education, v40 n13 p1606-1628 2018
This study investigates the modelling conceptualisation of secondary school students in two situations related to particle dynamics: pendulum's motion and horizontal motion. We performed in-depth clinical interviews with secondary school students (N = 10). Participants' ideas about properties which are not 'given' in empirical observations were explored in order to investigate signs of abstractions and idealisations in their reasoning processes. We proposed contributions to modelling in science education based on Mario Bunge's epistemology and we employed his basic concepts as the axis to analyse our results: (1) abstractions and idealisations, considered as thought processes required to build conceptual counterparts of concrete objects; (2) theoretical models, meaning hypothetico-deductive systems concerning those conceptual objects; and (3) general theoretical frameworks that allow us to derive those theoretical models. We developed our analysis viewing the ideas presented by participants as concepts-in-action and theorems-in-action as regarded by GĂ©rard Vergnaud's Theory of Conceptual Fields. Results indicated a gradation in the concepts-in-action mobilised in terms of levels of idealisation and showed that participants do not spontaneously recognise the use of a general theory as a possible way to obtain a theoretical model. These results suggest that science education practices must pay better attention to make abstractions and idealisations explicit in scientific concepts formation, as well as to the heuristic role of theories in model construction.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A