ERIC Number: EJ955726
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Feb
Abstractor: As Provided
Regional Queensland Parents' Views of Science Education: Some Unexpected Perceptions
Boon, Helen J.
Australian Educational Researcher, v39 n1 p17-43 Feb 2012
Low post-compulsory science enrolments for secondary students have been a growing concern across the Western world. Research has examined factors relating to science curricula and students' attitudes about science, but parental views of science education remain largely unexplored in Australia. Because parents have a strong role in shaping their children's subject selection and career choices, in this pilot study we sought to explore parental attitudes about science education. Results from focus interviews and a survey of 132 Indigenous and non-Indigenous parents demonstrated, for the first time, that regional parents believe the study of society and the environment (SOSE) is a better preparation than science for their children's understanding of socio-scientific issues. Most parents were unclear as to the nature of scientific literacy, believing science as it is currently taught in primary schools, not to be relevant to their children's needs. Structural equation modelling using the survey data confirmed prior researchers' claims and extended ideas about the likely interplay of parental attitudes and beliefs influencing their support of science study for their children. The results highlight an urgent need to explore such parental views across Australia.
Descriptors: Student Attitudes, Foreign Countries, Scientific Literacy, Science Education, Parent Attitudes, Secondary School Students, Parent Role, Career Choice, Science and Society, Structural Equation Models
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia