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ERIC Number: EJ957174
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 37
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0305-7267
New Perspectives on Context-Based Chemistry Education: Using a Dialectical Sociocultural Approach to View Teaching and Learning
King, Donna
Studies in Science Education, v48 n1 p51-87 2012
Context-based chemistry education aims to improve student interest and motivation in chemistry by connecting canonical chemistry concepts with real-world contexts. Implementation of context-based chemistry programmes began 20 years ago in an attempt to make the learning of chemistry meaningful for students. This paper reviews such programmes through empirical studies on six international courses, "ChemCom" (USA), "Salters" (UK), "Industrial Science" (Israel), "Chemie im Kontext" (Germany), "Chemistry in Practice" (The Netherlands) and "PLON" (The Netherlands). These studies are categorised through emergent characteristics of: relevance, interest/attitudes/motivation and deeper understanding. These characteristics can be found to an extent in a number of other curricular initiatives, such as science-technology-society approaches and problem-based learning or project-based science, the latter of which often incorporates an inquiry-based approach to science education. These initiatives in science education are also considered with a focus on the characteristics of these approaches that are emphasised in context-based education. While such curricular studies provide a starting point for discussing context-based approaches in chemistry, to advance our understanding of how students connect canonical science concepts with the real-world context, a new theoretical framework is required. A dialectical sociocultural framework originating in the work of Vygotsky is used as a referent for analysing the complex human interactions that occur in context-based classrooms, providing teachers with recent information about the pedagogical structures and resources that afford students the agency to learn. (Contains 1 table.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia; Germany; Israel; Netherlands; United Kingdom; United States
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A