Pushkin, David B.
Chemical educators need to be better aware of the distinctions between algorithmic learning and conceptual learning. Much has been written on students who do not continue with their science education, the characteristics of these students, and the type of learners these students are. However, possibly due to the traditional and restrictive nature of our introductory curricula, many chemical educators fail to understand cognitive phenomena underlying algorithmic and conceptual learning.
Presents a problem on solubility equilibrium which involves macroscopic, microscopic, and symbolic levels of representation as a resource for the evaluation of students, and allows for assessment as to whether students have acquired an adequate conceptual understanding of the phenomenon. Also diagnoses difficulties with regard to previous…
Cheong, Irene Poh-Ai; Treagust, David; Kyeleve, Iorhemen J.; Oh, Peck-Yoke
In this study, a two-tier diagnostic test for understanding malaria was developed and administered to 314 Bruneian students in Year 12 and in a nursing diploma course. The validity, reliability, difficulty level, discriminant indices, and reading ability of the test were examined and found to be acceptable in terms of measuring students'…
Modeling students' conceptual understanding of force, velocity, and acceleration Rebecca Rosenblatt, velocity, and acceleration. The test was administered to more than 800 students enrolled in standard incorrect response that velocity must be in the direction of the acceleration or net force, up to 30
Constructs a teaching strategy to facilitate conceptual change in freshman students' understanding of electrochemistry. Provides students with the correct response along with alternative responses (teaching experiments), producing a conflicting situation that is conducive to an equilibration of their cognitive structures. Concludes that the…
Miller, Larry S.; Nakhleh, Mary B.; Nash, John J.; Meyer, Jeanne A.
Students' attitudes toward and conceptual understanding of chemical instrumentation is surveyed. The study shows that, in general, the students' attitudes toward using instrumentation in the lab is quite positive and they felt that using instrumentation in the lab allowed them not only to connect "chemistry" and the "real world", but also to…
Chi-Yan Tsui; David F. Treagust
This article explores the conceptual change of students in Grades 10 and 12 in three Australian senior high schools when the teachers included computer multimedia to a greater or lesser extent in their teaching of a genetics course. The study, underpinned by a multidimensional conceptual-change framework, used an interpretive approach and a case-based design with multiple data collection methods. Over
Tsui, Chi-Yan; Treagust, David F.
This article explores the conceptual change of students in Grades 10 and 12 in three Australian senior high schools when the teachers included computer multimedia to a greater or lesser extent in their teaching of a genetics course. The study, underpinned by a multidimensional conceptual-change framework, used an interpretive approach and a…
Slater, Stephanie; Bretones, P. S.; McKinnon, D.; Schleigh, S.; Slater, T. F.; Astronomy, Center; Education Research, Physics
Large international investigations into the learning of science, such as the TIMSS and PISA studies, have been enlightening with regard to effective instructional practices. Data from these studies revealed weaknesses and promising practices within nations' educational systems, with evidence to suggest that these studies have led to international reforms in science education. However, these reforms have focused on the general characteristics of teaching and learning across all sciences. While extraordinarily useful, these studies have provided limited insight for any given content domain. To date, there has been no systematic effort to measure individual's conceptual astronomy understanding across the globe. This paper describes our motivations for a coordinated, multinational study of astronomy understanding. First, reformed education is based upon knowing the preexisting knowledge state of our students. The data from this study will be used to assist international astronomy education and public outreach (EPO) professionals in their efforts to improve practices across global settings. Second, while the US astronomy EPO community has a long history of activity, research has established that many practices are ineffective in the face of robust misconceptions (e.g.: seasons). Within an international sample we hope to find subpopulations that do not conform to our existing knowledge of student misconceptions, leading us to cultural or educational practices that hint at alternative, effective means of instruction. Finally, it is our hope that this first venture into large-scale disciplinary collaboration will help us to craft a set of common languages and practices, building capacity and leading toward long-term cooperation across the international EPO community. This project is sponsored and managed by the Center for Astronomy & Physics Education Research (CAPER), in collaboration with members of the International Astronomical Union-Commission 46. We are actively welcoming and seeking partners in this work.
Bandyopadhyay, Atanu; Kumar, Arvind
This work is an attempt to see how physics undergraduates view the basic ideas of general relativity when they are exposed to the topic in a standard introductory course. Since the subject is conceptually and technically difficult, we adopted a "case studies" approach, focusing in depth on about six students who had just finished a one semester…
Bude, Luc; Imbos, Tjaart; van de Wiel, Margaretha W.; Berger, Martijn P.
In this study the effect of the reduced distribution of study activities on students' conceptual understanding of statistics is investigated in a quasi-experiment. Conceptual understanding depends on coherent and error free knowledge structures. Students need time to construct such knowledge structures. A curriculum reform at our university…
Montfort, Devlin B.; Brown, Shane; Whritenour, Victoria
Researchers have long been interested in how to recruit and retain more and more diverse students into engineering programs. One consistent challenge in this research is understanding the impacts of interventions from the point of view of the student, and how their preconceptions may influence that effectiveness. This study investigated how…
Clark, Douglas B.
This research analyzes students' conceptual change across a semester in an 8th-grade thermodynamics curriculum. Fifty students were interviewed 5 times during their 8th-grade semester and then again preceding their 10th- and 12th-grade years to follow their subsequent progress. The interview questions probed students' understanding of…
Cataloglu, E.; Robinett, R. W.
Describes an assessment instrument designed to test conceptual and visual understanding of quantum theory, probe various aspects of student understanding of some core ideas of quantum mechanics, and investigate how students develop over the undergraduate curriculum. (Contains 52 references.) (Author/YDS)
Alkhawaldeh, Salem A.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of the conceptual change text oriented instruction over traditionally designed instruction on ninth grade students' understanding of the human circulatory system concepts, and their retention of this understanding. The subjects of this study consist of 73 ninth grade female students…
Danipog, Dennis L.; Ferido, Marlene B.
This study aimed to determine the effects of art-based chemistry activities (ABCA) on high school students' conceptual understanding in chemistry. The study used the pretest-posttest control group design. A total of 64 third-year high school students from two different chemistry classes participated in the study. One class was exposed to art-based…
Reinfried, Sibylle; Aeschbacher, Urs; Rottermann, Benno
Students' everyday ideas of the greenhouse effect are difficult to change. Environmental education faces the challenge of developing instructional settings that foster students' conceptual understanding concept of the greenhouse effect in order to understand global warming. To facilitate students' conceptual development with regard to the…
Sungur, Semra; Tekkaya, Ceren; Geban, Omer
Investigates the contribution of conceptual change texts accompanied by concept mapping instruction to 10th-grade students' understanding of the human circulatory system. Indicates that the conceptual change texts accompanied by concept mapping instruction produced a positive effect on students' understanding of concepts. Concludes that students…
Baser, Mustafa; Geban, Omer
This study was conducted to investigate the effectiveness of learning activities based on conceptual change conditions and traditionally designed physics instruction on tenth-grade students' understanding of static electricity concepts and their attitudes toward physics as a school subject. Misconceptions related to static electricity concepts…
Chiu, Mei-Hung; Guo, Chorng-Jee; Treagust, David F.
In this article, we discuss several aspects of the national project, the National Science Concept Learning Study, designed to assess elementary, middle, and secondary students' conceptual understanding in science. After a short introduction to provide some history of the project, we describe the processes used in the integrative study, the…
James P. Barufaldi
This study explored the phenomenon of testing effect during science concept assessments, including the mechanism behind it and its impact upon a learner's conceptual understanding. The participants consisted of 208 high school students, in either the 11th or 12th grade. Three types of tests (traditional multiple?choice test, correct concept test, and incorrect concept test) related to the greenhouse effect and
Chang, Chun-Yen; Yeh, Ting-Kuang; Barufaldi, James P.
This study explored the phenomenon of testing effect during science concept assessments, including the mechanism behind it and its impact upon a learner's conceptual understanding. The participants consisted of 208 high school students, in either the 11th or 12th grade. Three types of tests (traditional multiple-choice test, correct concept test,…
Holtman, Lorna Benita
This study investigated eighty junior and senior college students' understanding of evolutionary biology concepts in lecture-only and lecture-laboratory settings. The evolution lab stressed the processes of evolution, and involved simulations, experiments, discussions, report writing, and reading. Test scores do not reveal everything about the actual process of learning in the laboratory. This study examined conceptual change patterns over a period of one semester using in-depth interviews with eight participants. The study revealed that the lecture-laboratory group performed better than the lecture-only group on certain shared items on the objective examination. The interview participants showed various patterns of conceptual change; that is, holistic (wholesale and cascade), fragmented, and dual constructions. Dual constructions and wholesale conceptual changes were the most common types of conceptual change patterns observed. Laboratory work in evolution allowed students to grapple with their alternative conceptions for abstract evolutionary concepts. They made use of the opportunities for cognitive conflict provided by the lab sessions. Some students adhered to their initial alternative conceptions which constrained the provision of scientific explanations for the biological problems. Examples of alternative conceptions are a young earth, rejection of macroevolution, and Lamarckian conceptions. The belief system of one student strongly influenced her retention of alternative conceptions, although she had done the laboratory course. However, two other students (one a lecture-lab participant) who held similar religious beliefs were able to develop a better understanding of evolution. Strong religious beliefs do not always preclude a good understanding of evolution. This study revealed a direct, positive relationship between students' understanding of evolutionary concepts and their understanding of the nature of science. The observation was true for both lecture-only and lecture-lab groups.
Bayrak, Beyza Karadeniz
The purpose of this study was to identify primary students' conceptual understanding and alternative conceptions in acid-base. For this reason, a 15 items two-tier multiple choice test administered 56 eighth grade students in spring semester 2009-2010. Data for this study were collected using a conceptual understanding scale prepared to include…
Butler, Kyle A.; Lumpe, Andrew
This study was designed to theoretically articulate and empirically assess the role of computer scaffolds. In this project, several examples of educational software were developed to scaffold the learning of students performing high level cognitive activities. The software used in this study, Artemis, focused on scaffolding the learning of students as they performed information seeking activities. As 5th grade students traveled through a project-based science unit on photosynthesis, researchers used a pre-post design to test for both student motivation and student conceptual understanding of photosynthesis. To measure both variables, a motivation survey and three methods of concept map analysis were used. The student use of the scaffolding features was determined using a database that tracked students' movement between scaffolding tools. The gain scores of each dependent variable was then correlated to the students' feature use (time and hits) embedded in the Artemis Interface. This provided the researchers with significant relationships between the scaffolding features represented in the software and student motivation and conceptual understanding of photosynthesis. There were a total of three significant correlations in comparing the scaffolding use by hits (clicked on) with the dependent variables and only one significant correlation when comparing the scaffold use in time. The first significant correlation ( r = .499, p < .05) was between the saving/viewing features hits and the students' task value. This correlation supports the assumption that there is a positive relationship between the student use of the saving/viewing features and the students' perception of how interesting, how important, and how useful the task is. The second significant correlation ( r = 0.553, p < 0.01) was between the searching features hits and the students' self-efficacy for learning and performance. This correlation supports the assumption that there is a positive relationship between the student use of the searching features and the students' perception of their ability to accomplish a task as well as their confidence in their skills to perform that task. The third significant correlation ( r = 0.519, p < 0.05) was between the collaborative features hits and the students' essay performance scores. This correlation supports the assumption that there is a positive relationship between the student use of the collaborative features and the students' ability to perform high cognitive tasks. Finally, the last significant correlation ( r = 0.576, p < 0.01) was between the maintenance features time and the qualitative analysis of the concept maps. This correlation supports the assumption that there is a positive relationship between the student use of the maintenance features and student conceptual understanding of photosynthesis.
In present paper, we propose a new diagnostic test to measure students' conceptual knowledge of principles of modern physics topics. Over few decades since born of physics education research (PER), many diagnostic instruments that measure students' conceptual understanding of various topics in physics, the earliest tests developed in PER are Force…
Bude, Luc; van de Wiel, Margaretha W. J.; Imbos, Tjaart; Berger, Martijn P. F.
Background: Education is aimed at students reaching conceptual understanding of the subject matter, because this leads to better performance and application of knowledge. Conceptual understanding depends on coherent and error-free knowledge structures. The construction of such knowledge structures can only be accomplished through active learning…
Reports on a study that constructs a Lakatosian teaching strategy that can facilitate conceptual change in students' understanding of chemical equilibrium. Results indicate that the experimental group performed better on tests. Contains 81 references. (DDR)
Hrepic, Zdeslav; Zollman, Dean A.; Rebello, N. Sanjay
We investigated introductory physics students' mental models of sound propagation. We used a phenomenographic method to analyze the data in the study. In addition to the scientifically accepted Wave model, students used the "Entity" model to describe the propagation of sound. In this latter model sound is a self-standing entity, different from the…
Bilgin, Ibrahim; Geban, Omer
The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of the cooperative learning approach based on conceptual change conditions over traditional instruction on 10th grade students' conceptual understanding and achievement of computational problems related to chemical equilibrium concepts. The subjects of this study consisted of 87 tenth grade…
Hill, M.; Sharma, M. D.; Johnston, H.
The use of online learning resources as core components of university science courses is increasing. Learning resources range from summaries, videos, and simulations, to question banks. Our study set out to develop, implement, and evaluate research-based online learning resources in the form of pre-lecture online learning modules (OLMs). The aim of this paper is to share our experiences with those using, or considering implementing, online learning resources. Our first task was to identify student learning issues in physics to base the learning resources on. One issue with substantial research is conceptual understanding, the other with comparatively less research is scientific representations (graphs, words, equations, and diagrams). We developed learning resources on both these issues and measured their impact. We created weekly OLMs which were delivered to first year physics students at The University of Sydney prior to their first lecture of the week. Students were randomly allocated to either a concepts stream or a representations stream of online modules. The programme was first implemented in 2013 to trial module content, gain experience and process logistical matters and repeated in 2014 with approximately 400 students. Two validated surveys, the Force and Motion Concept Evaluation (FMCE) and the Representational Fluency Survey (RFS) were used as pre-tests and post-tests to measure learning gains while surveys and interviews provided further insights. While both streams of OLMs produced similar positive learning gains on the FMCE, the representations-focussed OLMs produced higher gains on the RFS. Conclusions were triangulated with student responses which indicated that they have recognized the benefit of the OLMs for their learning of physics. Our study shows that carefully designed online resources used as pre-instruction can make a difference in students’ conceptual understanding and representational fluency in physics, as well as make them more aware of their learning processes. In particular, the representations-focussed modules offer more advantages.
Johnson, Karen Gabrielle; Galluzzo, Benjamin Jason
Mathematical modeling and directed learning groups were employed in a terminal mathematics course to encourage university students to conceptualize real-world mathematics problems. Multiple assessments were utilized to determine whether students' conceptual development is enhanced by participating in directed learning groups conducted in a…
This article describes the development and field test of the Sound Concept Inventory Instrument (SCII), designed to measure middle school students' concepts of sound. The instrument was designed based on known students' difficulties in understanding sound and the history of science related to sound and focuses on two main aspects of sound: sound has material properties, and sound has process properties. The final SCII consists of 71 statements that respondents rate as either true or false and also indicate their confidence on a five-point scale. Administration to 355 middle school students resulted in a Cronbach alpha of 0.906, suggesting a high reliability. In addition, the average percentage of students' answers to statements that associate sound with material properties is significantly higher than the average percentage of statements associating sound with process properties (p <0.001). The SCII is a valid and reliable tool that can be used to determine students' conceptions of sound.
Al khawaldeh, Salem A.
Background and Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the comparative effects of a prediction/discussion-based learning cycle (HPD-LC), conceptual change text (CCT) and traditional instruction on 10th grade students' understanding of genetics concepts. Sample: Participants were 112 10th basic grade male students in three…
Olympiou, Georgios; Zacharias, Zacharia; deJong, Ton
This study aimed to identify if complementing representations of concrete objects with representations of abstract objects improves students' conceptual understanding as they use a simulation to experiment in the domain of "Light and Color". Moreover, we investigated whether students' prior knowledge is a factor that must be considered in deciding…
NurtaÇ Canpolat; Samih BayrakÇeken
This study investigated the effect of conceptual change text-oriented instruction over traditional instruction on students' understanding of solution concepts (e.g., dissolving, solubility, factors affecting solubility, concentrations of solutions, types of solutions, physical properties of solutions) and their attitudes towards chemistry. The sample of this study consisted of 87 undergraduate students from two classes enrolled in an introductory chemistry course. One
Zacharia, Zacharias; Anderson, O. Roger
Investigates the effects of interactive computer-based simulations presented prior to inquiry-based laboratory experiments on students' conceptual understanding of mechanics, waves/optics, and thermal physics. Uses conceptual tests to assess conceptual understandings of each topic. Indicates that the use of the simulations improved students'…
Niebert, Kai; Gropengießer, Harald
Over the last 20 years, science education studies have reported that there are very different understandings among students of science regarding the key aspects of climate change. We used the cognitive linguistic framework of experientialism to shed new light on this valuable pool of studies to identify the conceptual resources of understanding…
Slater, Timothy F.; Lee, K. M.
Many different types of schematic diagrams are useful in helping students organize and internalize their developing understanding in introductory astronomy courses. These include Venn Diagrams, Flowcharts, Concept Maps, among others, which illustrate the relationships between astronomical objects and dynamic concepts. These conceptual framework diagrams have been incorporated into the NSF-funded ClassAction project. ClassAction is a collection of electronic materials designed to enhance the metacognitive skills of college and university introductory astronomy survey students by promoting interactive engagement and providing rapid feedback in a highly visual setting. The main effort is targeted at creating dynamic think-pair-share questions supported by simulations, animations, and visualizations to be projected in the lecture classroom. The infrastructure allows instructors to recast these questions into alternative forms based on their own pedagogical preferences and feedback from the class. The recourses can be easily selected from a FLASH computer database and are accompanied by outlines, graphics, and numerous simulations which the instructor can use to provide student feedback and, when necessary, remediation. ClassAction materials are publicly available online at URL: http://astro.unl.edu and is funded by NSF Grant #0404988.
This article describes a study analyzing narrative essays, stories of rock formation, written by pre-service elementary school teachers. Most of these students had completed a college-level course in earth science, yet they expressed startling misconceptions about how rocks form. These misconceptions arise from deeply held but largely unexamined beliefs (conceptual prisms) that result from the interaction of the student's world view and personal experiences. The study addressed three basic research questions: how do students describe the process of rock formation in narrative essays?, are there common patterns in students' naive conceptions about geology?, and can these patterns be explained by a few underlying beliefs that shape student ideas?
Scheja, Max; Pettersson, Kerstin
Research on student learning in higher education suggests that threshold concepts within various disciplines have the capacity to transform students' understanding. The present study explores students' understanding in relation to particular threshold concepts in mathematics--integral and limit--and tries to clarify in what sense developing an…
Gunel, Murat; Hand, Brian; McDermott, Mark Andrew
Writing-to-learn activities in science classrooms can have an impact on student learning. This study sought to examine if the audience for which students write explanations of biology concepts affects their understanding of these concepts. One hundred eighteen Year 9/10 biology students from four classes participated in the study. There were four…
Southerland, Sherry A.; Abrams, Eleanor; Cummins, Catherine L.; Anzelmo, Julie
This study explores two differing perspectives of the nature of students' biological knowledge structures, conceptual frameworks, and p-prims. Students from four grade levels and from three regions of the United States were asked to explain a variety of biological phenomena. Students' responses to the interview probes were analyzed to describe 1) patterns in the nature of students' explanations across grade levels and interview probes, and 2) the consistency of students' explanations across individual interview probes and across the range of probes. The results were interpreted from both perspectives of knowledge structures. While definitive assertions supporting either perspective could not be made, each hypothesis was explored. Although the more prevalent description of student conceptions within a broader conceptual framework could not be discounted, the p-prim of need as a rationale for change was also found to offer a useful description of knowledge frameworks for this content area. The difficulties endemic to the use of biology for the study of basic knowledge structures are also discussed.
Gobert, Janice D.; Clement, John J.
Grade five students' (n=58) conceptual understanding of plate tectonics was measured by analysis of student-generated summaries and diagrams, and by posttest assessment of both the spatial/static and causal/dynamic aspects of the domain. The diagram group outperformed the summary and text-only groups on the posttest measures. Discusses the effects…
McNeill, Katherine L.; Vaughn, Meredith Houle
This study investigates how the enactment of a climate change curriculum supports students' development of critical science agency, which includes students developing deep understandings of science concepts and the ability to take action at the individual and community levels. We examined the impact of a four to six week urban ecology curriculum…
Kalman, Calvin S.
Students can have great difficulty reading scientific texts and trying to cope with the professor in the classroom. Part of the reason for students' difficulties is that for a student taking a science gateway course the language, ontology and epistemology of science are akin to a foreign culture. There is thus an analogy between such a student and an anthropologist spending time among a native group in some remote part of the globe. This brings us naturally to the subject of hermeneutics. It is through language that we attempt to understand an alien culture. The hermeneutical circle involves the interplay between our construct of the unfamiliar with our own outlook that deepens with each pass. It can be argued that for novice students to acquire a full understanding of scientific texts, they also need to pursue a recurrent construction of their comprehension of scientific concepts. In this paper it is shown how an activity, reflective-writing, can enhance students' understanding of concepts in their textbook by getting students to approach text in the manner of a hermeneutical circle. This is illustrated using studies made at three post-secondary institutions.
Chen, Ying-Chih; Hand, Brian; McDowell, Leah
This quasi-experimental and pre/posttest study was designed to examine whether fourth-grade students who engaged in collaboratively writing letters to 11th-grade students performed better on tests of conceptual understanding of a unit on force and motion than students who did not. The participants included 835 fourth-grade students and 416…
Hilton, Annette; Nichols, Kim
Understanding bonding is fundamental to success in chemistry. A number of alternative conceptions related to chemical bonding have been reported in the literature. Research suggests that many alternative conceptions held by chemistry students result from previous teaching; if teachers are explicit in the use of representations and explain their…
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of a computer simulation in terms of increased student conceptual understanding based on the instructional sequence, that is, as to when is the most appropriate time for a simulation to be presented to improve student understanding of a science concept. Many science educators feel that computer simulation offers tremendous potential
Wallace, Colin S.; Prather, Edward E.; Duncan, Douglas K.
This is the first in a series of five articles describing a national study of general education astronomy students' conceptual and reasoning difficulties with cosmology. In this paper, we describe the process by which we designed four new surveys to assess general education astronomy students' conceptual cosmology knowledge. These surveys focused…
This article describes the development and field test of the Sound Concept Inventory Instrument (SCII), designed to measure middle school students' concepts of sound. The instrument was designed based on known students' difficulties in understanding sound and the history of science related to sound and focuses on two main aspects of…
Weather. Doesn't that sound like an easy topic to teach and learn? Children experience it without effort and without even thinking about it. But, that's part of the problem. We need to take every opportunity to create circumstances for students to recogni
Jonathan Wray, M.A.
In this 5-minute audio recording, Jonathan Wray describes ways in which his district is supporting teachers in the transition to the Common Core State Standards. He explains how the shifts, especially in fractions, make it necessary for teachers to have a deeper understanding of the concepts. This recording is also available in PDF format.
Ellis, Jennifer T.
This study was designed to evaluate the effects of a proprietary software program on students' conceptual and visual understanding of dimensional analysis. The participants in the study were high school general chemistry students enrolled in two public schools with different demographics (School A and School B) in the Chattanooga, Tennessee,…
The purpose of this study is to assess students' conceptual learning of electricity and magnetism and examine how these conceptions, beliefs about physics, and quantitative problem-solving skills would change after peer instruction (PI). The Conceptual Survey of Electricity and Magnetism (CSEM), Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey…
Jitendra, Asha; DiPipi, Caroline M.; Perron-Jones, Nora
Four middle school students with learning disabilities and low mathematics performance received schema strategy training in problem schemata (conceptual understanding) and problem solution (procedural understanding). Results indicated that the schema-based strategy was effective in substantially increasing the number of correctly solved word…
Gericke, Niklas; Hagberg, Mariana; Jorde, Doris
In this study we investigate students' ability to discern conceptual variation and the use of multiple models in genetics when reading content-specific excerpts from biology textbooks. Using the history and philosophy of science as our reference, we were able to develop a research instrument allowing students themselves to investigate the occurrence of multiple models and conceptual variation in Swedish upper secondary textbooks. Two excerpts using different models of gene function were selected from authentic textbooks. Students were given the same questionnaire-instrument after reading the two texts, and the results were compared. In this way the students themselves made a classification of the texts which could then be compared with the researchers' classification of the texts. Forty-one upper secondary students aged 18-19 participated in the study. Nine of the students also participated in semi-structured interviews. Students recognized the existence of multiple models in a general way, but had difficulty discerning the different models and the conceptual variation that occurs between them in the texts. Further they did not recognize the occurrence of incommensurability between multiple models. Students had difficulty in transforming their general knowledge of multiple models into an understanding of content specific models of gene function in the textbooks. These findings may have implications for students' understanding of conceptual knowledge because research has established textbooks as one of the most influential aspects in the planning and execution of biology lessons, and teachers commonly assign reading passages to their students without further explanation.
Waldrip, Bruce; Prain, Vaughan; Sellings, Peter
The development of students' reasoning and argumentation skills in school science is currently attracting strong research interest. In this paper we report on a study where we aimed to investigate student learning on the topic of motion when students, guided by their teacher, responded to a sequence of representational challenges in which their…
Kyle A. Butler; Andrew Lumpe
This study was designed to theoretically articulate and empirically assess the role of computer scaffolds. In this project,\\u000a several examples of educational software were developed to scaffold the learning of students performing high level cognitive\\u000a activities. The software used in this study, Artemis, focused on scaffolding the learning of students as they performed information\\u000a seeking activities. As 5th grade students
Grimellini-Tomasini, N.; And Others
Reviews research on student learning about collisions in physics instruction. Focus is placed on the main differences between the spontaneous perspective in describing/interpreting collisions and the disciplinary perspective based upon the energy and linear momentum conservation laws. (PR)
Edward E. Prather; T. F. Slater; D. Loranz
A challenge for astronomy teachers is to deeply and meaningfully assess students' conceptual and quantitative understanding of astronomy topics. In an effort to evaluate students' understanding, members of the Conceptual Astronomy and Physics Education Research (CAPER) Team are creating and field-testing innovative approaches to assessment. Leveraging both astronomy and physics education research, we are creating a series of assessment tools
The aim of the work presented here was to devise an activity associated with factors affecting boiling points. The intervention used a four-step constructivist-based teaching strategy, which was subsequently evaluated by a cohort of students. Data collection consisted of application of a purpose designed questionnaire consisting of four open-ended…
Analyzes narrative essays--stories of rock formation--written by pre-service elementary school teachers. Reports startling misconceptions among preservice teachers on pebbles that grow, human involvement in rock formation, and sedimentary rocks forming as puddles as dry up, even though these students had completed a college level course on Earth…
Hunt, Jessica H.; Little, Mary E.
In this article, the authors introduce a scenario identifying an elementary school special education teacher and interventionist (Mr. Powers) and his concerns in meeting the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSS-M). Like many teachers, Powers uses a response-to-intervention (RTI) framework to provide supports for students who require…
Ernst, Jeremy V.; Clark, Aaron C.
In 2009, the North Carolina Virtual Public Schools worked with researchers at the William and Ida Friday Institute to produce and evaluate the use of game creation by secondary students as a means for learning content related to career awareness in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines, with particular emphasis in…
Ozkaya, Ali Riza; Uce, Musa; Saricayir, Hakan; Sahin, Musa
The results of previous educational research raise some questions about the efficacy of conventional teaching strategies and point to a need for using teaching strategies that explicitly take into account misconceptions students bring to the classes or acquire during the teaching-learning process. Accordingly, this article presents efforts to…
Tracy, Dyanne M.; Gibbons, Mary K.
This article describes constructivist techniques for teaching concepts of decimals and metrics through the combination of innovative measuring tools, activities and videos in classrooms. Even though the chronological age of the students involved differed--fifth and sixth graders or pre-service teachers--it was discovered that similar activities…
Zahner, William; Velazquez, Griselda; Moschkovich, Judit; Vahey, Phil; Lara-Meloy, Teresa
We analyze how three seventh grade mathematics teachers from a majority Latino/a, linguistically diverse region of Texas taught the same lesson on interpreting graphs of motion as part of the Scaling Up SimCalc study (Roschelle et al., 2010). The students of two of the teachers made strong learning gains as measured by a curriculum-aligned…
In this study, the effect of animation enhanced conceptual change texts (CCT-CA) on grade 6 students' understanding of the particulate nature of matter (PNM) and transformation during the phase changes was investigated. A quasi-experimental design and one control group (CG, N = 25) and one experimental group (EG, N = 26) were used. While the…
Yilmaz, Diba; Tekkaya, Ceren; Sungur, Semra
The present study examined the comparative effects of a prediction/discussion-based learning cycle, conceptual change text (CCT), and traditional instructions on students' understanding of genetics concepts. A quasi-experimental research design of the pre-test-post-test non-equivalent control group was adopted. The three intact classes, taught by…
Dahsah, Chanyah; Coll, Richard K.; Sung-ong, Sunan; Yutakom, Naruemon; Sanguanruang, Sudjit
The international literature suggests students frequently resort to the use of formulae when solving stoichiometry problems without understanding the concepts. In prior work we identified Thai student alternative conceptions and ability to solve numerical problem for stoichiometry. The results indicate that many Thai students also hold alternative…
Durmu?, Jale; Bayraktar, ?ule
The purpose of this study was to investigate whether conceptual change texts and laboratory experiments are effective in overcoming misconceptions and whether the concepts were acquired permanently when these methods were utilized. In this study, we addressed some topics from the "Matter and Change" unit in science and technology class of elementary 4th grade. Students from three classes of an elementary school participated in the study ( N = 104). Students' misconceptions were determined by administering the "Matter Concept Test" before, immediately after and 13 weeks after the instructional period. The results of the study showed that both conceptual change texts and experiment method were more successful than traditional instruction in overcoming the misconceptions and acquiring permanent knowledge. However, there was not a significant difference between these two alternative approaches in terms of reducing the misconceptions.
Physics educators around the world often need reliable diagnostic materials to measure students' understanding of physics concept in high school. The purpose of this study is to evaluate a new diagnostic tool on High School Optics concept. Test of Conceptual Understanding on High School Optics (TOCUSO) consists of 25 conceptual items that…
Jale Durmus; ?ule Bayraktar
The purpose of this study was to investigate whether conceptual change texts and laboratory experiments are effective in overcoming\\u000a misconceptions and whether the concepts were acquired permanently when these methods were utilized. In this study, we addressed\\u000a some topics from the “Matter and Change” unit in science and technology class of elementary 4th grade. Students from three\\u000a classes of an
Hsu, Ying-Shao; Wu, Hsin-Kai; Hwang, Fu-Kwun
The purpose of this study is to understand in what ways a technology-enhanced learning (TEL) environment supports learning about the causes of the seasons. The environment was designed to engage students in five cognitive phases: Contextualisation, Sense making, Exploration, Modeling, and Application. Seventy-five high school students participated…
Ying-Shao Hsu; Hsin-Kai Wu; Fu-Kwun Hwang
The purpose of this study is to understand in what ways a technology-enhanced learning (TEL) environment supports learning\\u000a about the causes of the seasons. The environment was designed to engage students in five cognitive phases: Contextualisation,\\u000a Sense making, Exploration, Modeling, and Application. Seventy-five high school students participated in this study and multiple\\u000a sources of data were collected to investigate students’
Ryu, Suna; Han, Yuhwha; Paik, Seoung-Hey
The present study explores how engaging in modeling practice, along with argumentation, leverages students' epistemic and conceptual understanding in an afterschool science/math class of 16 tenth graders. The study also explores how students used mobile Internet phones (smart phones) productively to support modeling practices. As the modeling practices became more challenging, student discussion occurred more often, from what to model to providing explanations for the phenomenon. Students came to argue about evidence that supported their model and how the model could explain target and related phenomena. This finding adds to the literature that modeling practice can help students improve conceptual understanding of subject knowledge as well as epistemic understanding.
Suping, Shanah M.
This ERIC Digest concerns the constructed knowledge (also called nave knowledge or prior conceptions) held by students and the changes required to alter students' framework to understand and believe the true science concepts involved. This process is called conceptual change. Theoretical framework of conceptual change, what exactly is conceptual…
Colin S. Wallace; Edward E. Prather; Douglas K. Duncan
This is the final paper in a five-paper series describing our national study of the teaching and learning of cosmology in general education astronomy college-level courses. A significant portion of this work was dedicated to the development of five new Lecture-Tutorials that focus on addressing the conceptual and reasoning difficulties that our research shows students have with frequently taught cosmology
CONCEPTUALIZATION AND IMAGE UNDERSTANDING BY NEURAL NETWORKS A Thesis by GUDIPALLEY CHANDU Submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies of Texas AkM University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of MASTER OF SCIENCE... August 1993 Major Subject: Electrical Engineering CONCEPTUALIZATION AND IMAGE UNDERSTANDING BY NEURAL NETWORKS A Thesis by GUDIPALLEY CHANDU Approved as to style and content by: (. C' . . N . C. Griswold (Chair of Committee) . K. Aityan...
Durmus, Jale; Bayraktar, Sule
The purpose of this study was to investigate whether conceptual change texts and laboratory experiments are effective in overcoming misconceptions and whether the concepts were acquired permanently when these methods were utilized. In this study, we addressed some topics from the "Matter and Change" unit in science and technology class of…
Rebello, Carina M.; Siegel, Marcelle A.; Witzig, Stephen B.; Freyermuth, Sharyn K.; McClure, Bruce A.
The purpose of this investigation was to explore students' epistemic beliefs and conceptual understanding of biotechnology. Epistemic beliefs can influence reasoning, how individuals evaluate information, and informed decision making abilities. These skills are important for an informed citizenry that will participate in debates regarding areas in…
Despite the advances made in various fields, women are still considered as minorities in the fields of science and mathematics. There is a gender gap regarding women's participation and achievement in physics. Self-efficacy and attitudes and beliefs toward physics have been identified as predictors of students' performance on conceptual surveys in physics courses. The present study, which used two-way analysis of variance and multiple linear regression analyses at a community college in California, revealed there is no gender gap in achievement between male and female students in physics courses. Furthermore, there is an achievement gap between students who are enrolled in algebra-based and calculus-based physics courses. The findings indicate that attitudes and beliefs scores can be used as predictors of students' performance on conceptual surveys in physics courses. However, scores of self-efficacy cannot be used as predictors of students' performance on conceptual surveys in physics courses.
ROGER AZEVEDO; JOHN T. GUTHRIE; DIANE SEIBERT
This study examines the role of self-regulated learning (SRL) in facilitating students' shifts to more sophisticated mental models of the circulatory system as indicated by both performance and process data. We began with Winne and colleagues' information processing model of SRL (Winne, 2001; Winne & Hadwin, 1998) and used it to examine how students regulated their own learning when using
McNeal, Karen Sue
research strands which contribute to the scientific and pedagogical understanding of complex Earth systems. In the first strand, a method that characterizes volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as ecological proxies of soil microbial ecosystems was validated...
Walker, Joi Phelps; Sampson, Victor; Grooms, Jonathon; Anderson, Brittany; Zimmerman, Carol O.
This article describes a new instructional model called Argument-Driven Inquiry (ADI). This model is designed to promote student engagement in processes of investigation design and scientific argumentation. In this study, the ADI instructional model is compared with a more traditional approach to instruction across 16 laboratory sections of…
Azevedo, Roger; Guthrie, John T.; Seibert, Diane
This study examines the role of self-regulated learning (SRL) in facilitating students' shifts to more sophisticated mental models of the circulatory system as indicated by both performance and process data. We began with Winne and colleagues' information processing model of SRL (Winne, 2001; Winne & Hadwin, 1998) and used it to examine how…
Language Learners, or ELLs) and low socio-economic status (low-SES) backgrounds. The study derived from a randomized, longitudinal, field-based NSF funded research project (NSF Award No. DRL - 0822343) targeting ELL and non-ELL students from low-SES...
Effects of Problem-Based Learning with Web-Anchored Instruction in Nanotechnology on the Science Conceptual Understanding, the Attitude towards Science, and the Perception of Science in Society of Elementary Students
Yurick, Karla Anne
This study explored the effects of Problem-Based Leaning (PBL) with web-anchored instruction in nanotechnology on the science conceptual understanding, the attitude towards science, and the perception of science in society of elementary students. A mixed-methods approach was used. Subjects (N=46) participated in the study for approximately two…
Howard, Kristen E.; Brown, Shane A.; Chung, Serena H.; Jobson, B. Thomas; VanReken, Timothy M.
Research has shown that high school and college students have a lack of conceptual understanding of global warming, ozone, and the greenhouse effect. Most research in this area used survey methodologies and did not include concepts of atmospheric chemistry and ozone formation. This study investigates college students' understandings of atmospheric…
CONCEPTUALIZATION AND IMAGE UNDERSTANDING BY NEURAL NETWORKS A Thesis by GUDIPALLEY CHANDU Submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies of Texas AkM University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of MASTER OF SCIENCE... thesis. Last, but not the least, I would like to thank all my friends, K. Desilva. , E. Kischell, J. Kim, K. Miller and H. Lee for all their help in one way or the other. TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER Page INTRODUCTION . A. Introduction . B. Trend...
Teachers of science-based education in Malaysian secondary schools, especially those in the field of physics, often find their students facing huge difficulties in dealing with conceptual ideas in physics, resulting thus in a lack of interest towards the subject. The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of the Brain-Based Teaching…
Kathleen K. Gallucci
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of the case method of instruction (CMI) on conceptual change in students' understanding of genes, biodiversity, and evolution topics, and to investigate the effect of learning with CMI on student attitude regarding the discipline of science, and learning about science. The study also investigated students' perceptions of their learning gains
This workbook of conceptual exercises, created by Christopher Wozny of Waycross College, covers the material from introductory physics. It is written to help students understand important physics concepts and principles and to help them develop the problem-solving skills needed to solve conceptual exercises consistently and correctly. Each chapter examines a different topic and has three different types of conceptual exercises, â??Conflicting Contentionsâ?ť tasks, â??Qualitative Reasoningâ?ť tasks, and â??Can You Explain This?â?ť tasks.
Cobb, Amanda J.
Understanding Tribal Sovereignty: Definitions, Conceptualizations, and Interpretations Amanda J. Cobb Beginnings Forty years have passed since the Midcontinent American Studies Journal published its landmark special issue, "The Indian Today."1...-3079/2005/4603/4-115S2.50/0 American Studies, 46:3/4 (Fall-Winter 2005): 115-132 Indigenous Studies Today, 1 (Fall 2005/Spring 2006) 116 Amanda J. Cobb ing. Indeed, the word sovereignty is so frequently used by Native American studies scholars that it risks losing...
Dumais, Nancy; Hasni, Abdelkrim
Understanding real-life issues such as influenza epidemiology may be of particular interest to the development of scientific knowledge and initiation of conceptual changes about viruses and their life cycles for high school students. The goal of this research project was to foster the development of adolescents' conceptual understanding of viruses…
Wallace, Colin S.; Prather, Edward E.; Duncan, Douglas K.
This is the final paper in a five-paper series describing our national study of the teaching and learning of cosmology in general education astronomy college-level courses. A significant portion of this work was dedicated to the development of five new "Lecture-Tutorials" that focus on addressing the conceptual and reasoning difficulties that our…
Effects of problem-based learning with Web-anchored instruction in nanotechnology on the science conceptual understanding, the attitude towards science, and the perception of science in society of elementary students
Yurick, Karla Anne
This study explored the effects of Problem-Based Leaning (PBL) with web-anchored instruction in nanotechnology on the science conceptual understanding, the attitude towards science, and the perception of science in society of elementary students. A mixed-methods approach was used. Subjects (N=46) participated in the study for approximately two and a half weeks. A pretest was administered for science conceptual understanding and for attitude towards science. An intervention, web-based nanotechnology anchor, Catching the Rays, followed. Catching the Rays navigated subjects through a nano quest on sunscreen. After the intervention, a posttest was administered for each science conceptual understanding and attitude towards science. Following, a purposeful selection of interviewees (N=6) participated in a Nano Post-Interview. Pretest/posttest data were analyzed using a paired t test. Results of the paired t test for science conceptual understanding (post- being larger than pre-, p <. 01) and attitude towards science (post- being larger than pre-, p < .01) were significant at the p < .05 alpha level. Nano Post-Interview data were coded and analyzed independently by two raters for emerging themes. Two themes of "Risks and Benefits" and "Solves Problems" emerged from subjects' (N=6) responses to perception of science in society questions. The theme of "Risks and Benefits" strongly suggests that subjects have a positive perception that nanotechnology comes with risks and benefits to society. The theme of "Solves Problems" strongly suggests subjects have a positive perception that nanotechnology is governed by society's needs and is used to help solve society's problems. Findings from this study suggest that PBL with web-anchored instruction in nanotechnology had a positive effect on subjects' science conceptual understanding, attitude towards science, and perception of science in society.
Learning quantum mechanics is challenging for many students. We are investigating the difficulties that upper-level students have in learning quantum mechanics. To help improve student understanding of quantum concepts, we are developing quantum interactive learning tutorials (QuILTs) and tools for peer-instruction. Many of the QuILTs employ computer simulations to help students visualize and develop better intuition about quantum phenomena. We will discuss the common students' difficulties and research-based tools we are developing to bridge the gap between quantitative and conceptual aspects of quantum mechanics and help students develop a solid grasp of quantum concepts. Support from the National Science Foundation is gratefully acknowledged.
Despite the central role of risk assessment in analyzing and making decisions about many environmental issues, most people are poorly equipped to understand key concepts about risk or apply them successfully. I present three class activities in which students develop a better appreciation for the magnitude of a one in a million increased risk of…
Milne, Catherine; Kirch, Susan; Basu, Sreyashi Jhumki; Leou, Mary; Fraser-Abder, Pamela
We engage in a metalogue based on eight papers in this issue of "Cultural Studies of Science Education" that review the state of conceptual change research and its possible affect on the teaching and learning of science. Our discussion addresses three aspects of conceptual change research: theoretical, methodological, and practical, as we discuss…
This study purposed to determine the effect of an endogenously designed instructional game on conceptual understanding of the associative and distributive properties of multiplication. Additional this study sought to investigate if performance on measures of conceptual understanding taken prior to and after game play could serve as predictors of…
Sally Merryman Hobson
This mixed methods study explored young children's understandings of targeted lunar concepts, including when the moon can be observed, observable lunar phase shapes, predictable lunar patterns, and the cause of moon phases. Twenty-one children (ages seven to nine years) from a multi-aged classroom participated in this study. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews, student drawings, and card sorting before and
Interviewed 10 students in a secondary school teacher education program to determine the students' understandings of environment. Four conceptualizations of environment were portrayed: social, political, bio-physical, and inclusive. Four conceptualizations of human-nature relationships were described: connected, separate,…
Undreiu, Lucian M.
In most liberal arts colleges the prerequisites for College Physics, Introductory or Calculus based, are strictly related to Mathematics. As a state of fact, the majorities of the students perceive Physics as a conglomerate of mathematical equations, a collection of facts to be memorized and they regard Physics as one of the most difficult subjects. A change of this attitude towards Physics, and Science in general, is intrinsically connected with the promotion of conceptual understanding and stimulation of critical thinking. In such an environment, the educators are facilitators, rather than the source of knowledge. One good way of doing this is to challenge the students to think about what they see around them and to connect physics with the real world. Motivation occurs when students realize that what was learned is interesting and relevant. Visual teaching aids such as educational videos or computer simulations, as well as computer-assisted experiments, can greatly enhance the effectiveness of a science lecture or laboratory. Difficult topics can be discussed through animated analogies. Special Relativity is recognized as a challenging topic and is probably one of the most misunderstood theories of Physics. While understanding Special Relativity requires a detachment from ordinary perception and every day life notions, animated analogies can prove to be very successful in making difficult topics accessible.
The aims of this cross-grade study were (1) to determine the level of understanding of energy concepts of students at different academic grades and the differences in understanding between these grades and (2) to analyse the conceptual development of these students. Two hundred and forty-three students at 3 different levels (high school,…
Manuel A. Serrano; Juan Trujillo; Coral Calero; Mario Piattini
Due to the principal role of Data warehouses (DW) in making strategy decisions, data warehouse quality is crucial for organizations. Therefore, we should use methods, models, techniques and tools to help us in designing and maintaining high quality DWs. In the last years, there have been several approaches to design DWs from the conceptual, logical and physical perspectives. However, from
Howe, Christine; Devine, Amy; Tavares, Joana Taylor
When students reason during school science, they often refer to conceptions that are derived from out-of-school experiences and are poor proxies for science orthodoxy. However, for some areas of science, these conceptions represent only a proportion of students' full conceptual knowledge, for tacit understanding exists that is superior to the…
Sigler, Ellen A.; Saam, Julie
Education researchers suggest that teacher education candidates be taught that meaningful learning is essential and that conceptual understanding be infused into all lessons. However, many teacher candidates are unable to successfully develop conceptual level lesson plans and some are unable to differentiate between skills and concepts. The…
Background Since Goffman’s seminal work on psychiatric institutions, deinstitutionalization has become a leading term in the psychiatric debate. It described the process of closure or downsizing of large psychiatric hospitals and the establishment of alternative services in the community. Yet, there is a lack of clarity on what exactly the concept of institutionalization means in present-day psychiatry. This review aims to identify the meaning of psychiatric institutionalization since the early 1960s to present-day. Method A conceptual review of institutionalization in psychiatry was conducted. Thematic analysis was used to synthesize the findings. Results Four main themes were identified in conceptualizing institutionalization: bricks and mortar of care institutions; policy and legal frameworks regulating care; clinical responsibility and paternalism in clinician-patient relationships; and patients’ adaptive behavior to institutionalized care. Conclusions The concept of institutionalization in psychiatry reflects four distinct themes. All themes have some relevance for the contemporary debate on how psychiatric care should develop and on the role of institutional care in psychiatry. PMID:23773398
In recent years, biodiversity has received a great deal of attention worldwide, especially in environmental education. The reasons for this attention are the increase of human activities on biodiversity and environmental problems. The purpose of this study is to investigate biology student teachers' conceptual frameworks regarding biodiversity.…
Howard, K. E.; Chung, S. H.; Jobson, B. T.; Vanreken, T. M.; Brown, S. A.
Atmospheric chemistry in general, and tropospheric ozone formation in particular, are complex processes that to be understood require students to learn several interrelated concepts. These systems are particularly difficult to grasp because they are inherently nonlinear and because they are abstract- students do not have an obvious tangible model for how gases behave in an unbounded atmosphere. To address perceived shortfalls in our students’ conceptualizations of atmospheric chemical processes, we have endeavored to develop, implement, and assess curricular materials that can be used from the freshmen to graduate level. Our goal was to both improve student understanding of the fundamental concepts of atmospheric chemistry while simultaneously reinforcing the scientific method and what it means to do science. Our approach for achieving this was to build student-friendly interfaces to adapt existing research models for use in the classroom and thereby provide students with a means of exploring the evolution of pollutants in the atmosphere. A major focus of the project was student understanding of ozone formation. In this presentation we provide insight regarding collegiate students’ conceptions of ozone formation and discuss possible explanations for student misconceptions in this and related environmental topics of concern. In order to extract student understanding and conceptions of ozone formation, qualitative interview and analysis methodologies were implemented. These qualitative procedures allowed us to gain a rich and detailed understanding of the specific nature of students’ mental models of these concepts. Forty-five participants were included in the study, all of which were collegiate students enrolled in a junior-level Introduction to Environmental Engineering course at Washington State University. Our results show that the students seemed to comprehend many individual concepts within ozone production cycle to some extent. However, there were very few students who were able to link together overlapping ideas, especially when it came to piecing together a process model for ozone formation. This caused them to have a weak conceptual understanding of the overall material. Our results further suggest that a reason for these weak conceptions may be due to underlying incorrect understandings of fundamental concepts in chemistry and physics. Interestingly, students frequently verbalized synthetic models of understanding that included correct and incorrect concepts from class and information they had learned from the media. These models conflated the process being studied- tropospheric ozone formation- with two other atmospheric processes that receive extensive public attention: stratospheric ozone destruction and greenhouse gas-induced global warming. Results have implications for teaching and the challenges in guiding students in the integration of knowledge obtained outside of class and classroom concepts to develop expert understandings.
Furio-Mas, Carles; Calatayud, Maria-Luisa; Barcenas, Sergio L.
By the end of their high school studies, students should be able to understand macroscopic and sub-microscopic conceptualization of acid-base behavior and the relationship between these conceptual models. The aim of this article is to ascertain whether grade-12 students have sufficient background knowledge to explain the properties of acids,…
Describes the use of a new pedagogic approach to geology used to create a sequence of investigative activities enabling students to speculate, hypothesize, observe, test, reason, and infer about the characteristics of rocks. The approach is framed by two questions: (1) What are the key characteristics of different rock groups?; and (2) How did the…
Perna, Laura W.
Working is now a fundamental responsibility for many undergraduates. But understanding how employment affects students' educational experiences is complicated by why students work. Many students must work to pay the costs of attending college. Some traditional-age students may use employment as a way to explore career options or earn spending…
Tsaparlis, Georgios; Papaphotis, Georgios
This study tested for deep understanding and critical thinking about basic quantum chemical concepts taught at 12th grade (age 17-18). Our aim was to achieve conceptual change in students. A quantitative study was conducted first (n = 125), and following this 23 selected students took part in semi-structured interviews either individually or in…
Johan Van Niekerk; Rossouw Von Solms
The importance of establishing an information security culture in an organization has become a well established idea. The aim of such a culture is to address the various human factors that can affect an organization's overall information security efforts. However, understanding both the various el- ements of an information security culture, as well as the relationships between these elements, can
Chu, Hye-Eun; Treagust, David F.; Yeo, Shelley; Zadnik, Marjan
The aims of this study were to determine the underlying conceptual structure of the thermal concept evaluation (TCE) questionnaire, a pencil-and-paper instrument about everyday contexts of heat, temperature, and heat transfer, to investigate students' conceptual understanding of thermal concepts in everyday contexts across several school years and…
McNeal, K.; Vasquez, Y.; Avandano, C.; Moreno, K.; Besinaiz, J.
The Graduate K-12 (GK12) program has been developed by NSF to support the national effort to advance scientific knowledge through educational partnerships. This paper highlights research conducted during the 2006-2007 school year with the Texas A&M University GK12 project. Two elementary schools with very high numbers of at risk students - those who are poor, speak English as their second language, and have a history of failing state-mandated tests were identified to be the field site for the GK12 project. In these two, high-minority (97% and 40% African American and Hispanic) schools, 80% and 56% of the children have been identified by the state as at risk; 94% and 52% are classified as economically disadvantaged; and 46% and 2% are limited English proficient, respectively. In the past year, 30% and 73% of fifth grade students in these schools passed the science portion of the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test. Data collected during a three- week period where GK12 fellows taught the fifth graders Earth science-related topics is presented. During the implementation, students were engaged in technology-, inquiry-, and game-based activities. Students were divided into low-, medium-, and high-abilities in one school, and regular and bilingual groups in the other. Pre- post open-ended multiple choice tests indicated that all but the low performing students' conceptual understanding (CU) significantly (p < 0.05) improved during the IT activity. The low and high student groups' CU significantly improved during the inquiry activity, and the high and bilingual students' CU significantly improved for the game activities. Classroom observation assessments showed that there was a significant (p < 0.10) positive (0.347) correlation between on-task behavior and CU. Significant differences between student groups' CU and on-task behavior indicated that technology-based activities showed greatest differences between the low- ability learners and the other students, whereas, inquiry-based activities tended not to show such extremes. In the case of the bilingual and regular students however, technology-based instruction tended to increase their scores and decrease gaps with other groups. Using different pedagogical approaches (e.g., technology-, inquiry- and game-based methods) to teach Earth science is important to reach all elementary students. Earth science educators should not forget that there does not exist any one teaching and learning method that will be a 'quick fix' for the masses. However, educational partnerships between universities and K-12 schools strengthen the efforts to increase scientific literacy among all students, including diverse and at risk populations.
Patti D. Soderberg
This study is an investigation of student understanding of population genetics and how students developed, used and revised conceptual models to solve problems. The students in this study participated in three rounds of problem solving. The first round involved the use of a population genetics model to predict the number of carriers in a population. The second round required them
Kim, Minkee; Song, Jinwoong
Many models in science education have tried to clarify the causal relationships of affective variables on student performance, by presenting theoretical models, exploratory SEM (structural equation models), and confirmatory SEM. Based on the literature, the recent AS-TI-CU model scrutinised the most robust stimuli of conceptual understanding (CU):…
Boyd, Fenice B.; Ikpeze, Chinwe H.
The authors draw on Cognitive Flexibility Theory (Spiro, Coulson, Feltovich, & Anderson, 2004) as a lens to examine one seventh-grade English language arts teacher's pedagogical approach to using multiple text types to develop students' conceptual understandings about the 1957 integration of Little Rock's Central High School. Multiple text types…
Fox-Turnbull, Wendy; O'Sullivan, Gary
This article reports on the up-date and development of an on-line resource to support of teachers' conceptual understandings and pedagogical practice in New Zealand. Techlink is a website dedicated to supporting technology teachers, students and those with an interest in technology education. This research documents part of a Ministry of Education…
Greeno, James G.; van de Sande, Carla
We propose a bridge between cognitive and sociocultural approaches that is anchored on the sociocultural side by distributed cognition and participation, and on the cognitive side by information structures. We interpret information structures as the contents of distributed knowing and interaction in activity systems. Conceptual understanding is…
Dancy, Melissa H.; Beichner, Robert
This study investigates the effect of computer animation on assessment and the conditions under which animation may improve or hinder assessment of conceptual understanding in physics. An instrument was developed by replacing static pictures and descriptions of motion with computer animations on the Force Concept Inventory, a commonly used pencil…
Historians and philosophers of science have recognized the importance of controversies in the progress of science. The objective of this study was to facilitate in-service chemistry teachers' understanding of conceptual change based on alternative philosophical interpretations (controversies). Selected controversies formed part of the chemistry…
Dietmar Dommenget; Janine Floeter
The future climate change projections are essentially based on coupled general circulation model (CGCM) simulations, which give a distinct global warming pattern with arctic winter amplification, an equilibrium land-sea warming contrast and an inter-hemispheric warming gradient. While these simulations are the most important tool of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) predictions, the conceptual understanding of these predicted structures
Bartell, Tonya Gau; Webel, Corey; Bowen, Brian; Dyson, Nancy
This study examined prospective teachers' (PSTs) ability to recognize evidence of children's conceptual understanding of mathematics in three content areas before and after an instructional intervention designed to support this ability. It also investigates the role PSTs' content knowledge plays in their ability to recognize children's…
Amsterdam, University of
in neurological structures and processes, which provide the capacity to concept formation and understanding, which is capable of generating semantically directed binding of concepts in constituent structures we have groups of neurones that function as conceptual indicators, which together form the general
Gallucci, Kathleen K.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of the case method of instruction (CMI) on conceptual change in students' understanding of genes, biodiversity, and evolution topics, and to investigate the effect of learning with CMI on student attitude regarding the discipline of science, and learning about science. The study also investigated students' perceptions of their learning gains based on CMI. This was a mixed-methods action research study that used a quasi-experimental design. The study participants were enrolled in three sections (n1 = 20, n2 = 16, n3 = 30) of the same introductory biology course during the spring of 2006 at a small, private university in the southeastern United States. At the beginning of the semester, students completed a pretest composed of six open-ended questions (two on each topic) to uncover their alternative conceptions---or lack of them, and after instruction using CMI, students answered the same questions as a post-test on two hourly class exams. The answers were scored with original rubrics and the differences between the scores were analyzed using the Student's paired t-Test. In addition, twelve student volunteers were interviewed twice, once after each exam, by an independent interviewer, to elicit their understanding about the method of CMI, their understanding of the topics from the recent exam, and their attitudes about science and learning about science. The interviews were audio taped and transcribed, and analyzed for themes and comments about conceptual understanding and learning about science. Students also completed two instruments anonymously: the Science Attitude Inventory (SAI II) and the Student Assessment of Learning Gains (SALG). The SAI II was completed on the first and the last day of the semester to assess change in student attitude about science and the pretest and posttest scores were analyzed for significant differences. Students completed the SALG online immediately before the course final exam to provide their opinion on learning science with CMI and their perception of learning gains made by using CMI. Student responses in each of 5 categories were studied and written comments were analyzed. According to the interview data, CMI presented a new learning paradigm for students and many agreed that the method made learning more interesting, motivating, and relevant, and as a consequence they learned more and expect to retain knowledge longer. Based on the pretest answers, many students had alternative conceptions, but some responses indicated a lack of preconceptions altogether. All classes showed an increase in conceptual learning of all three topics, based on the analysis of the posttest rubric scores, with evolution concepts showing the largest increase. CMI appears to have a no effect on student attitude toward science, according to the SAI II data, it but does affect student attitude about learning science, based on the interview data. CMI appears to be a teaching strategy that can promote student engagement in learning science and may help students to make progress toward conceptual change.
Redish, Edward F.
This collection of educational research forms the basis for the University of Maryland's "A New Model Course in Applied Quantum Mechanics." The scope of these research articles ranges from broad ("Teaching physics: Figuring out what works") to the very specific ("Student Misunderstanding of the Quantum Wavefunction").
Gay, A. Susan; Peterson, Ingrid
Concept-focused quiz questions required College Algebra students to write about their understanding. The questions can be viewed in three broad categories: a focus on sense-making, a focus on describing a mathematical object such as a graph or an equation, and a focus on understanding vocabulary. Student responses from 10 classes were analyzed.…
May, David B.; Etkina, Eugenia
Students should develop self-reflection skills and appropriate views about knowledge and learning, both for their own sake and because these skills and views may be related to improvements in conceptual understanding. We explored the latter issue in the context of an introductory physics course for first-year engineering honors students. As part of the course, students submitted weekly reports, in which they reflected on how they learned specific physics content. The reports by 12 students were analyzed for the quality of reflection and some of the epistemological beliefs they exhibited. Students' conceptual learning gains were measured with standard survey instruments. We found that students with high conceptual gains tend to show reflection on learning that is more articulate and epistemologically sophisticated than students with lower conceptual gains. Some implications for instruction are suggested.
: Creating effective learning environments Core Goals for Learning Environments Engagement Understanding Self-regulated of learning and development Unit 2: Influences on learning Unit 3: Instructional goals and assessment Unit 4 learning Transfer Collaboration Summary: The Structure of this Textbook The Features of this Textbook
Understanding real-life issues such as influenza epidemiology may be of particular interest to the development of scientific knowledge and initiation of conceptual changes about viruses and their life cycles for high school students. The goal of this research project was to foster the development of adolescents' conceptual understanding of viruses and influenza biology. Thus, the project included two components: 1) pre- and posttests to determine students' conceptions about influenza biology, epidemics/pandemics, and vaccination; and 2) design an intervention that supports conceptual change to promote improvements in influenza knowledge based on these primary conceptions. Thirty-five female students from a high school biology class participated in a series of instructional activities and pre- and posttest assessments. Results from the pretest indicated that high school students exhibit a limited understanding of concepts related to viruses. Six weeks after an intervention that promoted active learning, results from a posttest showed that conceptions about influenza are more accurately related to the provided scientific knowledge. Although adolescents have nonscientific models to explain influenza biology, we showed that a carefully designed intervention can affect students' knowledge as well as influence the implementation of health education programs in secondary schools. PMID:19255137
Bond, Marjorie E.; Perkins, Susan N.; Ramirez, Caroline
Although statistics education research has focused on students' learning and conceptual understanding of statistics, researchers have only recently begun investigating students' perceptions of statistics. The term perception describes the overlap between cognitive and non-cognitive factors. In this mixed-methods study, undergraduate students…
The main objective of this study is to compare student performance on problems requiring conceptual understanding or the use of algorithmic solution strategies, that is, computational problems. Seventy?eight science major freshman students at the Universidad de Oriente (Venezuela) were tested to obtain information on various aspects of chemical equilibrium. Results obtained support the hypothesis that students who perform better on
Burch, Gerald F.; Heller, Nathan A.; Burch, Jana J.; Freed, Rusty; Steed, Steve A.
Student engagement is considered to be among the better predictors of learning, yet there is growing concern that there is no consensus on the conceptual foundation. The authors propose a conceptualization of student engagement grounded in A. W. Astin's (1984) Student Involvement Theory and W. A. Kahn's (1990) employee engagement research where…
Learning quantum mechanics is especially challenging, in part due to the abstract nature of the subject. We have been conducting investigations of the difficulties that students have in learning quantum mechanics. To help improve student understanding of quantum concepts, we are developing quantum interactive learning tutorials (QuILTs) as well as tools for peer-instruction. The goal of QuILTs and peer-instruction tools is to actively engage students in the learning process and to help them build links between the formalism and the conceptual aspects of quantum physics without compromising the technical content. They focus on helping students integrate qualitative and quantitative understanding, confront and resolve their misconceptions and difficulties, and discriminate between concepts that are often confused. In this talk, I will give examples from my research in physics education of how students' prior knowledge relevant for quantum mechanics can be assessed, and how learning tools can be designed to help students develop a robust knowledge structure and critical thinking skills. Supported by the National Science Foundation.
Running head: STUDENTS' UNDERSTANDING OF MATHEMATICAL INTEGRATION 1 Students' Understanding and N. Sanjay Rebello Kansas State University #12;STUDENTS' UNDERSTANDING OF MATHEMATICAL INTEGRATION 2 Abstract We report on a study to explore students' understanding of integration as an accumulation process
Corradi, David M. J.; Elen, Jan; Schraepen, Beno; Clarebout, Geraldine
When learning with abstract and scientific multiple external representations (MERs), low prior knowledge learners are said to have difficulties in using these MERs to achieve conceptual understanding. Yet little is known about what these limitations precisely entail. In order to understand this, we presented 101 learners with low prior knowledge…
Lewis, Eileen Lob
There is great interest in the processes by which learners reorganize and reformulate knowledge. This research adds to the current understanding by exploring two questions. "How does the learner's understanding change during the study of elementary thermodynamics?," and "What motivates learners to restructure or reorganize their knowledge?" The conceptual changes and factors affecting that change over the course of a semester within an eighth grade physical science class are presented. General student understanding was assessed through open ended pretests, short tests and posttests given to the entire population ( N=180). This was combined with a series of five clinical interviews over the course of the 13 week instruction period for each of 33 students selected by stratified random design for gender and class period. Analysis combined interview and written test data for the experimental groups and written test data for the entire population, allowing both within subject and between subject analyses. A detailed process of conceptual change emerges with individual differences illustrating impediments to knowledge integration. Inferences that have broader application in science instruction are made.
Doig, Brian; And Others
This report describes the results of a 1992 survey of students' economic, geographical, cultural, historical, and political understandings in the state of Victoria (Australia). The conception of some 2,900 students in Years 5 and 9 in government, Catholic and independent schools are investigated and described. The survey is one of a series of…
Maloney, David P.; O'Kuma, Thomas L.; Hieggelke, Curtis J.; Van Heuvelen, Alan
Introduces the Conceptual Survey of Electricity and Magnetism (CSEM) which was developed to assess students' knowledge of topics in electricity and magnetism. Reports on the number of student difficulties in electricity and magnetism. (Contains 23 references.) (Author/YDS)
The objective of this research is to investigate the effects of simulations based on conceptual change conditions (CCS) and traditional confirmatory simulations (TCS) on pre-service elementary school teachers’ understanding of direct current electric circuits. The data was collected from a sample consisting of 89 students; 48 students in the experimental group who were taught simulations based on CCS, and 41
Lin, Huann-Shyang; Cheng, Hsiu-Ju; Lawrenz, Frances
To reveal students' conceptual understanding of gas laws, this study focused on the understanding and application of scientific concepts in practical situations instead of the use of mathematical calculations in theoretical situations. One hundred and nineteen 11th grade students and 36 high school chemistry teachers participated in this study. We found that even very capable students possess alternative conceptions that are resistant to change. Moreover, analysis of the teachers' problem responses revealed that teachers and students held similar alternative conceptions of gases. These results indicated that not only chemistry teachers but also science educators should be encouraged to pay more attention to concept-based pedagogy.
Park, Eun Jung
The nature of matter based upon atomic theory is a principal concept in science; hence, how to teach and how to learn about atoms is an important subject for science education. To this end, this study explored student perceptions of atomic structure and how students learn about this concept by analyzing student mental models of atomic structure. Changes in student mental models serve as a valuable resource for comprehending student conceptual development. Data was collected from students who were taking the introductory chemistry course. Responses to course examinations, pre- and post-questionnaires, and pre- and post-interviews were used to analyze student mental models of atomic structure. First, this study reveals that conceptual development can be achieved, either by elevating mental models toward higher levels of understanding or by developing a single mental model. This study reinforces the importance of higher-order thinking skills to enable students to relate concepts in order to construct a target model of atomic structure. Second, Bohr's orbital structure seems to have had a strong influence on student perceptions of atomic structure. With regard to this finding, this study suggests that it is instructionally important to teach the concept of "orbitals" related to "quantum theory." Third, there were relatively few students who had developed understanding at the level of the target model, which required student understanding of the basic ideas of quantum theory. This study suggests that the understanding of atomic structure based on the idea of quantum theory is both important and difficult. Fourth, this study included different student assessments comprised of course examinations, questionnaires, and interviews. Each assessment can be used to gather information to map out student mental models. Fifth, in the comparison of the pre- and post-interview responses, this study showed that high achieving students moved toward more improved models or to advanced levels of understanding. The analysis of mental models in this study has provided information describing student understanding of the nature and structure of an atom. In addition to an assessment of student cognition, information produced from this study can serve as an important resource for curriculum development, teacher education, and instruction.
Cedric J. Linder
This report discusses university physics students’ conceptualizations of the factors affecting the speed of sound propagation. The data source consists of a set of detailed explanations which Canadian and South African physics graduates provided during the course of clinical?like interviews dealing with their understanding of sound. The analysis of the students’ explanations was set in the phenomenographic tradition: their categorization
Investigates the effectiveness of combining conceptual change text and concept mapping strategies on students' understanding of diffusion and osmosis. Results indicate that while the average percentage of students in the experimental group holding a scientifically correct view rose, the percentage of correct responses in the control group…
Pettersson, Kerstin; Scheja, Max
The study explores the nature of students' conceptual understanding of calculus. Twenty students of engineering were asked to reflect in writing on the meaning of the concepts of limit and integral. A sub-sample of four students was selected for subsequent interviews, which explored in detail the students' understandings of the two concepts.…
Langbeheim, Elon; Safran, Samuel A.; Livne, Shelly; Yerushalmi, Edit
We analyze the development in students’ understanding of fundamental principles in the context of learning a current interdisciplinary research topic—soft matter—that was adapted to the level of high school students. The topic was introduced in a program for interested 11th grade high school students majoring in chemistry and/or physics, in an off-school setting. Soft matter was presented in a gradual increase in the degree of complexity of the phenomena as well as in the level of the quantitative analysis. We describe the evolution in students’ use of fundamental thermodynamics principles to reason about phase separation—a phenomenon that is ubiquitous in soft matter. In particular, we examine the impact of the use of free energy analysis, a common approach in soft matter, on the understanding of the fundamental principles of thermodynamics. The study used diagnostic questions and classroom observations to gauge the student’s learning. In order to gain insight on the aspects that shape the understanding of the basic principles, we focus on the responses and explanations of two case-study students who represent two trends of evolution in conceptual understanding in the group. We analyze changes in the two case studies’ management of conceptual resources used in their analysis of phase separation, and suggest how their prior knowledge and epistemological framing (a combination of their personal tendencies and their prior exposure to different learning styles) affect their conceptual evolution. Finally, we propose strategies to improve the instruction of these concepts.
Anniken Furberg; Hans Christian Arnseth
In the learning sciences, students’ understanding of scientific concepts has often been approached in terms of conceptual change. These studies are grounded in a cognitive or a socio-cognitive approach to students’ understanding and imply a focus on the\\u000a individuals’ mental representations of scientific concepts and ideas. We approach students’ conceptual change from a socio-cultural\\u000a perspective as they make new meaning
Adams, April Dean
In this study, the relationships between student beliefs about the nature of science, student attitudes, and conceptual change about the nature of forces were investigated within a traditional and within a constructivistic high school physics classroom. Students in both classrooms were honors students taking a first year high school physics course and were primarily white and middle to upper SES. Students in the traditional classroom were all high ability juniors, and physics instruction was integrated with pre-calculus. Students in the constructivistic classroom were a mixture of juniors and seniors. Due to the interrelated nature of these factors and the complexity of their interactions, a naturalistic inquiry design was chosen. The data sources included videotape of 7-9 weeks of instruction; analysis of the videotapes using the Secondary Teacher Analysis Matrix (Gallagher & Parker, 1995); field notes; pretest/posttest assessment with the Force Concept Inventory (Hestenes, Wells, & Swackhammer, 1992); student responses from the Views on Science-Technology-Society questionnaire (Aikenhead & Ryan, 1992), the Questionnaire for the Assessment of a Science Course (Chiappetta, 1995), and the Constructivist Learning Environment Survey (Taylor, Fraser, & White, 1994); student interviews; and teacher interviews. In the traditional classroom, (a) students did not think that physics was relevant to everyday experiences; (b) high conceptual change students were more likely to have an angular world view (Cobern, 1993) and have views more similar to the teacher's about the nature of science; and (c) high conceptual change students were able to develop an internally consistent understanding of the content; however, that content appeared to be isolated knowledge in some students. In the constructivistic classroom, (a) students saw physics as relevant and useful; (b) there was no difference in world view or agreement with the teacher's views on the nature of science between high and low conceptual change students; (c) students appreciated the importance of empirical evidence; and (d) low conceptual change students had low classroom engagement. Mean gains in conceptual change were larger for the traditional classroom.
Bean, John P.; Metzner, Barbara S.
The purpose of this paper is to describe the rise in nontraditional enrollments, define the nontraditional undergraduate student, and develop a conceptual model of the attrition process for these students. Nontraditional students are more affected by the external environment than by the social integration variables affecting traditional student…
Athanasiou, Kyriacos; Katakos, Efstratios; Papadopoulou, Penelope
In this study, we explored the factors related to acceptance of evolutionary theory among students/preservice preschool education teachers using conceptual ecology for biological evolution as a theoretical frame. We aimed to examine the acceptance and understanding of evolutionary theory and also the relationship of acceptance and understanding of…
Boudreaux, Andrew; Campbell, Craig
Student understanding of the equilibrium coexistence of a liquid and its vapor was the subject of an extended investigation. Written assessment questions were administered to undergraduates enrolled in introductory physics and chemistry courses. Responses have been analyzed to document conceptual and reasoning difficulties in sufficient detail to…
Georgiou, Helen; Sharma, Manjula Devi
Thermal physics is in the realm of everyday experience, underlies current environmental concerns, and underpins studies in sciences, health and engineering. In the state of NSW in Australia, the coverage of thermal topics in high school is minimal, and, hence, so is the conceptual understanding of students. This study takes a new approach at…
While there is a vast body of research on visual representations, the results do not paint a clear picture of how to use inscriptions to support learning. Part of the difficulty stems from the need for research that investigates the use of inscriptions in classroom learning contexts. Toward this end, there is a small body of work that investigates the role of inscriptions in supporting students' engagement in scientific reasoning practices. Through the development of a case study of expert practice, this dissertation contributes to that literature by examining the potential power of inscriptions as resources for science teaching and learning in the context of a teacher professional development course that aims to support 4th grade teachers' content knowledge around the topic of electric circuits. This study examined the curriculum and video record from one enactment of this course to analyze the affordances of particular representations for supporting conceptual understanding and scientific reasoning practices; examine the facilitator's inscriptional practices that supported collaborative learning; and analyze the interactions among the learners, facilitator, and inscriptions that supported conceptual understanding. This exemplary facilitator successfully used inscriptions to engage learners in scientific reasoning practices that supported their conceptual understanding. She used inscriptions to structure and support discussions that were based on learner-generated ideas, yet led to curriculum-directed conceptual and pedagogical goals. The curriculum provided a series of inscriptional resources that were well suited for the conceptual and scientific reasoning activities that they proposed to support. By using curricular inscriptions to shape the content and form of the discussions, the facilitator created opportunities to learn that were 1) contingent on learner contributions and understanding, and 2) congruent with curricular goals. This work identifies several pedagogical content knowledge demands of supporting scientific reasoning through the use of inscriptions. Beyond knowledge of the conceptual terrain, the facilitator needed to (a) understand the match between particular inscriptions (or types of inscriptions) and the conceptual or scientific reasoning work they can support; (b) understand and interpret learner ideas in relation to the curricular goals; and (c) use inscriptions to make learner ideas available for examination, analysis, revision and discussion in service of the curricular goals.
Ozcan, Ozgur; Didis, Nilufer; Tasar, Mehmet Fatih
In this study, students' conceptual difficulties about some basic concepts in quantum mechanics like one-dimensional potential well problems and probability density of tunneling particles were identified. For this aim, a multiple choice instrument named Quantum Mechanics Conceptual Test has been developed by one of the researchers of this study…
Zerr, Ryan J.
An overview is given of three conceptual lessons that can be incorporated into any first-semester calculus class. These lessons were developed to help promote calculus students' ability to think conceptually, in particular with regard to the role that infinity plays in the subject. A theoretical basis for the value of these lessons is provided,…
Claesgens, Jennifer Marie
The purpose of this dissertation research is to investigate and characterize how students learn chemistry from pre-instruction to deeper understanding of the subject matter in their general chemistry coursework. Based on preliminary work, I believe that students have a general pathway of learning across the "big ideas," or concepts, in chemistry that can be characterized over the course of instruction. My hypothesis is that as students learn chemistry they build from experience and logical reasoning then relate chemistry specific ideas in a pair-wise fashion before making more complete multi-relational links for deeper understanding of the subject matter. This proposed progression of student learning, which starts at Notions, moves to Recognition, and then to Formulation, is described in the ChemQuery Perspectives framework. My research continues the development of ChemQuery, an NSF-funded assessment system that uses a framework of the key ideas in the discipline and criterion-referenced analysis using item response theory (IRT) to map student progress. Specifially, this research investigates the potential for using criterion-referenced analysis to describe and measure how students learn chemistry followed by more detailed task analysis of patterns in student responses found in the data. My research question asks: does IRT work to describe and measure how students learn chemistry and if so, what is discovered about how students learn? Although my findings seem to neither entirely support nor entirely refute the pathway of student understanding proposed in the ChemQuery Perspectives framework. My research does provide an indication of trouble spots. For example, it seems like the pathway from Notions to Recognition is holding but there are difficulties around the transition from Recognition to Formulation that cannot be resolved with this data. Nevertheless, this research has produced the following, which has contributed to the development of the ChemQuery assessment system, (a) 13 new change items with good fits, 3 new change items that need further study, (b) a refined scoring guide and (c) a set of item exemplars that can then be developed further into a computer-adapted model so that more data can be captured.
Lutz, Barbara J; Bowers, Barbara J
A goal of rehabilitation nursing is to advance the care of persons with chronic disabling conditions by minimizing disability. There are two distinct perpectives in the literature about how to conceptualize disability. Definitions and models of disability that inform rehabilitation nursing practice are based on a functionalist perspective of illness and locate disability as a problem of individual functioning. Alternatively, there are definitions and models that have evolved from the civil rights and social justice perspectives, and that locate the problem of disability within a disabling society. Recent attempts to integrate these two perspectives are based on earlier rehabilitation models and the functionalist assumptions remain. Rehabilitation nursing research and practice based on either of these two perspectives is fragmented and incomplete. To know how to define and approach disability-related issues, it is important to understand how people living with disability perceive its influences on their lives. PMID:12747245
Arasasingham, Ramesh D.; Taagepera, Mare; Potter, Frank; Lonjers, Stacy
Using the concept of stoichiometry we examined the ability of beginning college chemistry students to make connections among the molecular, symbolic, and graphical representations of chemical phenomena, as well as to conceptualize, visualize, and solve numerical problems. Students took a test designed to follow conceptual development; we then analyzed student responses and the connectivities of their responses, or the cognitive organization of the material or thinking patterns, applying knowledge space theory (KST). The results reveal that the students' logical frameworks of conceptual understanding were very weak and lacked an integrated understanding of some of the fundamental aspects of chemical reactivity. Analysis of response states indicates that the overall thinking patterns began with symbolic representations, moved to numerical problem solving, and then lastly to visualization: the acquisition of visualization skills comes later in the knowledge structure. The results strongly suggest the need for teaching approaches that help students integrate their knowledge by emphasizing the relationships between the different representations and presenting them concurrently during instruction. Also, the results indicate that KST is a useful tool for revealing various aspects of students' cognitive structure in chemistry and can be used as an assessment tool or as a pedagogical tool to address a number of student-learning issues.
Decha Suppapittayaporn; Narumon Emarat; Kwan Arayathanitkul
This study proposed to investigate the effectiveness of learning activities based on a conceptual change theoretical framework by embedding a peer instruction method with structured inquiry (PISI) on tenth grade students’ understanding of force and motion concepts. This teaching method was compared to the existing traditional instruction (TI). Alternative conceptions of force and motion were determined through related literature and
Jensen, Jamie L.; McDaniel, Mark A.; Woodard, Steven M.; Kummer, Tyler A.
In order to test the effect of exam-question level on fostering student conceptual understanding, low-level and high-level quizzes and exams were administered in two sections of an introductory biology course. Each section was taught in a high-level inquiry based style but was assigned either low-level questions (memory oriented) on the quizzes…
Suppapittayaporn, Decha; Emarat, Narumon; Arayathanitkul, Kwan
This study proposed to investigate the effectiveness of learning activities based on a conceptual change theoretical framework by embedding a peer instruction method with structured inquiry (PISI) on tenth grade students' understanding of force and motion concepts. This teaching method was compared to the existing traditional instruction (TI).…
Maxwell, Bruce D.
MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING REGARDING STUDENT AND UNIVERSITY PATENT RIGHTS AND COPYRIGHT University [`student'], ____________________________, a professor / researcher at Montana State University [`faculty'], and Montana State University [`university']. The student is enrolled / engaged
Dorko, Allison; Speer, Natasha M.
Researchers have documented difficulties that elementary school students have in understanding volume. Despite its importance in higher mathematics, we know little about college students' understanding of volume. This study investigated calculus students' understanding of volume. Clinical interview transcripts and written responses to…
Jan Schoultz; Roger Säljö; Jan Wyndhamn
What is referred to as conceptual knowledge is one of the mostimportant deliverables of modern schooling. Following the dominance of cognitive paradigmsin psychological research, conceptual knowledge is generally construed assomething that lies ‘behind’ or ‘under’ performance in concrete social activities. In the presentstudy, students' responses to questions, supposedly tapping conceptual knowledge,have been studied as parts of concrete communicative practices. Our
Bangura, Abdul Karim
This paper explores the concept of student-centered instruction at the higher education level and proposes use of the STUCEN scale to evaluate student centeredness as an institution-wide strategy and to link it to performance criteria such as student recruitment, retention, and graduation. The philosophy of student centeredness is discussed in…
Leatham, Keith R.; Peterson, Blake E.; Stockero, Shari L.; Van Zoest, Laura R.
The mathematics education community values using student thinking to develop mathematical concepts, but the nuances of this practice are not clearly understood. The authors conceptualize an important group of instances in classroom lessons that occur at the intersection of student thinking, significant mathematics, and pedagogical…
Burke, Lisa A.
This article explores high-maintenance students in the university setting: those students who complain and whine, beyond reasonable limits, thereby exhausting their instructor's energy. By drawing heavily on the personality literature, I advance a conceptual foundation, research propositions, and suggestions for future research regarding…
The purpose of this study was to explore rural and provincial students' conceptualizations of nature in Colombia alongside the science education offered in their school communities. Students' perceptions of nature were produced from interviews that revolved around a focusing event and two eliciting devices to document their views about home,…
Donella Caspersz; Judy Skene; Madeline Wu
Managing cultural diversity in teams is a pressing challenge given the preponderance of teamwork as a tool to manage work in organisations whose workforces are increasingly becoming culturally diverse. The aim of this paper is to present a conceptual framework that may guide future research that focuses on managing cultural diversity in student teams. The discussion confirms that enhancing student
This article presents a provisional grounded theory of conceptual development for applied theory-building research. The theory described here extends the understanding of the components of conceptual development and provides generalized relations among the components. The conceptual development phase of theory-building research has been widely…
The objective of this research is to investigate the effects of simulations based on conceptual change conditions (CCS) and traditional confirmatory simulations (TCS) on pre-service elementary school teachers' understanding of direct current electric circuits. The data was collected from a sample consisting of 89 students; 48 students in the experimental group who were taught simulations based on CCS, and 41 students in control group who followed the TCS. Subjects in both groups used open source software (Qucs) to simulate electric circuits. All students were administered Electric Circuits Concepts Test (DIRECT), Science Process Skills Test, Physics Attitude Scale, and Computer Attitude Scale before the treatment. Pre-test analyses revealed that there is no significant difference between experimental and control groups in terms of understanding of direct current electricity. After completing 3 weeks treatment, all students received the DIRECT again as a post-test. Analysis of covariance was used. Science process skills and attitudes toward computers were taken as covariates. The results showed that the conceptual change based simulations caused significantly better acquisition of conceptual change of direct current electricity concepts than the confirmatory simulation. While science process skills and attitudes towards computer made significant contributions to the variations in achievement, gender differences and interactions between gender and treatment did not. Eleven weeks later, the DIRECT was reapplied to the students in both groups. Eleven weeks delayed post-test results showed that the experimental group outperformed the control group in understanding of direct current electric concepts.
Ayers, Suzan F.
The value of conceptual physical education knowledge has long been acknowledged (American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, and Recreation, 1969; Kneer, 1981; NASPE, 1995) yet has not been formally measured or assessed. Seven multiple choice tests with established validity and reliability (Ayers, 2001b) were used to assess the concepts…
Hu, Dehui; Rebello, N. Sanjay
This study focuses on students’ use of the mathematical concept of differentials in physics problem solving. For instance, in electrostatics, students need to set up an integral to find the electric field due to a charged bar, an activity that involves the application of mathematical differentials (e.g., dr, dq). In this paper we aim to explore students’ reasoning about the differential concept in physics problems. We conducted group teaching or learning interviews with 13 engineering students enrolled in a second-semester calculus-based physics course. We amalgamated two frameworks—the resources framework and the conceptual metaphor framework—to analyze students’ reasoning about differential concept. Categorizing the mathematical resources involved in students’ mathematical thinking in physics provides us deeper insights into how students use mathematics in physics. Identifying the conceptual metaphors in students’ discourse illustrates the role of concrete experiential notions in students’ construction of mathematical reasoning. These two frameworks serve different purposes, and we illustrate how they can be pieced together to provide a better understanding of students’ mathematical thinking in physics.
Jones, Edward Louis, II
One hundred sixteen community college students enrolled in a basic chemistry class who had completed a unit on the behavior of a gaseous substance were given a written instrument that presented several mathematical and conceptual problems describing the behavior of a gas. Nine students representing a range of achievement levels were chosen for more intensive clinical interviews. Interview results revealed that students commonly experience difficulties at three different levels: (1) Mathematical understanding. Most students could manipulate the gas law equations, but few had a real understanding of the equation. There were some unique understanding of proportional relationships. (2) Conceptual understanding. Many students could represent pictorially the notion that gas molecules randomly occupy the entire space of its container. Many, however, had a different conception of this when the air was compressed. The reason for this seemed to be due to a misunderstanding of the kinetic molecular theory. (3) Real-world application . Students' use of their mathematical understanding to explain the behavior of air in a real syringe revealed some internal consistency found in mathematical explanations of real-world phenomena. Many students used mathematical strategies consistent with their mathematical understanding and satisfactory for producing reasonable estimates of numerical values. All of the 9 students had misconceptions about mathematical proportionality with most of them understanding proportional relationships as being additive in nature. Although some of the students were able to state the relationship between two variables, they could only do so outside of the context of the gas law equation. Only one student was able to propose a reasonable explanation of the proportional relationships between variables in a gas law equation. All 9 students were classified as either transitional or naive in the real-world use of their mathematical understandings with 3 of the 9 clearly having naive conceptions of the mathematics of gas behavior. Also, a majority of the 9 students could clearly represent the nature of the submicroscopic level of gas behavior when asked to draw it during the clinical interview. However, only 2 of these students had the chemist's understanding of this concept when put to use with a real-world task.
This study explored how direct care workers in nursing homes conceptualize good care and how their conceptualizations are influenced by external factors surrounding their work environment and the relational dynamics between them and residents. Study participants were drawn from a local service employees' union, and in-depth interviews were…
In this study, high school and first-year undergraduate students were asked about their understanding of stars. The hypothesis guiding this research posits that high school students who have taken a semester-long astronomy course will have an understanding of stars most related to scientific knowledge, compared with high school students enrolled…
Pollock, S. J.
We present results demonstrating similar distributions of student scores, and statistically indistinguishable gains on two popular research-based assessment tools: the Brief Electricity and Magnetism Assessment (BEMA) and the Conceptual Survey of Electricity and Magnetism(CSEM). To deepen our understanding of student learning in our course environment and of these assessment tools as measures of student learning, we identify systematic trends and differences in results from these two instruments. We investigate correlations of both pre- and post- conceptual scores with other measures including traditional exam scores and course grades, student background (earlier grades), gender, a pretest of scientific reasoning, and tests of attitudes and beliefs about science and learning science. Overall, for practical purposes, we find the BEMA and CSEM are roughly equivalently useful instruments for measuring student learning in our course.
To explore the ways in which teacher-guided and student-centered instructional approaches influence students' conceptual understanding of seasonal change, we designed a technology-enhanced learning (TEL) course to compare, by means of concept maps, the learning outcome of students in two groups: a teacher-guided (TG) class (with whole-class…
Sanchez Martinez, Karla L.
The present study examined the efficacy of a haptic simulation used as a pedagogical tool to teach freshmen engineering students about electromagnetism. A quasi-experimental design-based research was executed in two iterations to compare the possible benefits the haptic device provided to the cognitive learning of students. In the first iteration of the experiment performance of learners who used visual-only simulations was compared to the performance of those who used visuohaptic. In the second iteration of the experiment modifications were made to learning materials and experiment procedures to enhance research design. Research hypothesis states that multimodal presentation of information may lead to better conceptual understanding of electromagnetism compared to visual presentation alone.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of small group discussion on students' conceptual understanding of chemical equilibrium. Students' understanding of chemical equilibrium concepts was measured using the Misconception Identification Test. The test consisted of 30 items and administered as pre-posttests to a total of 81…
Students' understanding of direct current resistive electrical circuits Paula Vetter Engelhardta Received 22 February 2002; accepted 1 August 2003 Both high school and university students' reasoning with a way of evaluating the progress and conceptual difficulties of their students. The analysis indicates
Ann Kosek Akey
This dissertation investigates the influence of student designed experiments with Fast Plants in an undergraduate agroecology course on the students' conceptual understanding of plant life cycles and on their procedural understanding of scientific experimentation. It also considers students' perspectives on the value of these experiences. Data sources included semi-structured interviews with students and the instructor, a written task, course evaluations,
Hrastinski, Stefan; Stenbom, Stefan
The aim of this paper is to describe student-student online coaching, defined as "an online service where a student gets support on a specific subject matter from a more experienced student". Student-student online coaching emphasizes learning a subject matter by giving a student the opportunity to get coached by a coach, i.e. a more experienced…
Investigates the effects of conceptual assignments and conceptual change discussions on high school students' achievement and misconceptions about force and motion. Analyzes pretest and posttest data from the Force Misconception and Force Achievement Tests (FMFAT). Discusses the effects on the conceptual change discussion on reducing…
Kruse, Jerrid; Wilcox, Jesse
Helping students understand how to learn is an important goal for all subjects and levels of education. While this goal is highly regarded, promoting it is extremely difficult. Many times, we as teachers are consumed with how to better help our students understand the content and forget to draw their attention to how they came to understand a…
McGill, Tanya J.; Volet, Simone E.
Proposes a conceptual framework for analyzing students' knowledge of programming. The idea is to integrate three types of programming knowledge from educational computing literature with three forms of knowledge from cognitive psychology literature. A study is described that determined types of knowledge required to answer exam questions, and…
Ng, Wan; Nicholas, Howard
In an era where technology is advancing at a rapid pace, and where information is readily accessible on the World Wide Web, educators should be capitalizing on these resources for gifted students. This paper proposes a conceptual framework to support individualized and independent learning within a network of peers that will provide challenging…
Leach, Linda; Zepke, Nick
Student engagement in learning is a complex process influenced by many factors. This article introduces a conceptual organiser developed from a review of the literature. It captures four key perspectives--motivation and agency, transactional engagement, institutional support and active citizenship--and suggested indicators for each perspective.…
Castillo, A. J.; Marshall, J.; Cardenas, M. B.
Our objective is to characterize and assess upper division and graduate student thinking by developing and testing an assessment tool for a physical hydrology class. The class' learning goals are: (1) Quantitative process-based understanding of hydrologic processes, (2) Experience with different methods in hydrology, (3) Learning, problem solving, communication skills. These goals were translated into two measurable tasks asked of students in a questionnaire: (1) Describe the significant processes in the hydrological cycle and (2) Describe laws governing these processes. A third question below assessed the students' ability to apply their knowledge: You have been hired as a consultant by __ to (1) assess how urbanization and the current drought have affected a local spring and (2) predict what the effects will be in the future if the drought continues. What information would you need to gather? What measurements would you make? What analyses would you perform? Student and expert responses to the questions were then used to develop a rubric to score responses. Using the rubric, 3 researchers independently blind-coded the full set of pre and post artifacts, resulting in 89% inter-rater agreement on the pre-tests and 83% agreement on the post-tests. We present student scores to illustrate the use of the rubric and to characterize student thinking prior to and following a traditional course. Most students interpreted Q1 in terms of physical processes affecting the water cycle, the primary organizing framework for hydrology, as intended. On the pre-test, one student scored 0, indicating no response, on this question. Twenty students scored 1, indicating rudimentary understanding, 2 students scored a 2, indicating a basic understanding, and no student scored a 3. Student scores on this question improved on the post-test. On the 22 post-tests that were blind scored, 11 students demonstrated some recognition of concepts, 9 students showed a basic understanding, and 2 students had a full understanding of the processes linked to hydrology. Half the students had provided evidence of the desired understanding; however, half still demonstrated only a rudimentary understanding. Results on Q2 were similar. On the pre-test, 2 students scored 0, 21 students scored 1, indicating rudimentary understanding, 2 students scored a 2, and no student scored a 3. On the post-test, again approximately half the students achieved the desired understanding: 9 students showed some recognition of concepts, 12 students demonstrated a basic understanding; only one student exhibited full understanding. On Q3, no student scored 0, 9 scored 1, 15 scored 2 and 1 student scored 3. On the post-test, one student scored 1, 16 students scored 2, and 5 students scored 3. Students were significantly better at responding to Q3 (the application) as opposed to Q1 and Q2, which were more abstract. Research has shown that students are often better able to solve contextualized problems when they are unable to deal with more abstract tasks. This result has limitations including the small number of participants, all from one institution, and the fact that the rubric was still under development. Nevertheless, the high inter-rater agreement by a group of experts is significant; the rubric we developed is a potentially useful tool for assessment of learning and understanding physical hydrology. Supported by NSF CAREER grant (EAR-0955750).
Paula V. Engelhardt; Robert J. Beichner
Research has shown that both high school and university students' reasoning patterns regarding direct current resistive electric circuits often differ from the currently accepted explanations. At present, there are no standard diagnostic examinations in electric circuits. Two versions of a diagnostic instrument called Determining and Interpreting Resistive Electric circuits Concepts Tests (DIRECT) were developed, each consisting of 29 questions. The information provided by the exam provides classroom instructors a means with which to evaluate the progress and conceptual difficulties of their students and their instructional methods. It can be used to evaluate curricular packages and/or other supplemental materials for their effectiveness in overcoming students' conceptual difficulties. The analyses indicate that students, especially females, tend to hold multiple misconceptions, even after instruction. During interviews, the idea that the battery is a constant source of current was used most often in answering the questions. Students tended to focus on current in solving the problems and to confuse terms, often assigning the properties of current to voltage and/or resistance. Results indicated that students do not have a clear understanding of the underlying mechanisms of electric circuit phenomena. On the other hand, students were able to translate easily from a "realistic" representation of a circuit to the corresponding schematic diagram.
Cetingul, Puren Ipek; Geban, Omer
This study explores changes of the tenth-grade students' conceptions about acids and bases by using conceptual change text oriented instruction accompanied with analogies. Since conceptual change is viewed not only as a process of replacement of old concepts but also a process of learning to relate ideas to appropriate contexts, the instruction…
Larson, Joanne; Gatto, Lynn Astarita
This article describes one urban classroom and the language and literacy practices jointly constructed by a veteran urban teacher, Lynn Gatto, and her 3rd grade students. Drawing from two ethnographic studies of Gattos 2nd-4th grade looped classroom, we argue that Gatto and her students use the interplay between strategies and tactics (De Certeau,…
Versprille, Ashley N.
The purpose of this study is to investigate first-semester general chemistry students' understanding of the chemistry underlying climate change. The first part of this study involves the collection of qualitative data from twenty-four first-semester general chemistry students from a large Midwestern research institution. The semi-structured interview protocol was developed based on alternative conceptions identified in the research literature and the essential principles of climate change outlined in the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) document which pertain to chemistry (CCSP, 2003). The analysis and findings from the interviews indicate conceptual difficulties for students, both with basic climate literacy and underlying chemistry concepts. Students seem to confuse the greenhouse effect, global warming, and the ozone layer, and in terms of chemistry concepts, they lack a particulate level understanding of greenhouse gases and their interaction with electromagnetic radiation, causing them to not fully conceptualize the greenhouse effect and climate change. Based on the findings from these interviews, a Chemistry of Climate Science Diagnostic Instrument (CCSI) was developed for use in courses that teach chemistry with a rich context such as climate science. The CCSI is designed for professors who want to teach general chemistry, while also addressing core climate literacy principles. It will help professors examine their students' prior knowledge and alternative conceptions of the chemistry concepts associated with climate science, which could then inform their teaching and instruction.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of conceptual assignments and conceptual change discussions on students' achievement and misconceptions about force and motion. The study was conducted with 6 physics teachers and their 18 classes, consisting of 396 high school physics students. The teachers administered the Force Misconception and Force Achievement Tests to their physics classes as
Zhang, Xiaofen; Clements, M. A. (Ken); Ellerton, Nerida F.
Area-model representations seem to have been dominant in the teaching and learning of fractions, especially in primary school mathematics curricula. In this study, we investigated 40 fifth grade children's understandings of the unit fractions, , and , represented through a variety of different models. Analyses of pre-teaching test and interview data revealed that although the participants were adept at partitioning regional models, they did not cope well with questions for which unit fractions were embodied in non-area-model scenarios. Analyses of post-teaching test and interview data indicated that after their participation in an instructional intervention designed according to Dienes' (1960) dynamic principle, the students' performances on tests improved significantly, and their conceptual understandings of unit fractions developed to the point where they could provide reasonable explanations of how they arrived at solutions. Analysis of retention data, gathered more than 3 months after the teaching intervention, showed that the students' newly found understandings had, in most cases, been retained.
Ronald K. Thornton; David R. Sokoloff
In this paper, we discuss the Force and Motion Conceptual Evaluation 1 ~FMCE!, and its use to evaluate student learning in introductory physics courses. This research-based, multiple-choice assessment instrument was designed to probe conceptual understanding of Newtonian mechanics. Results obtained on a subset of questions that were asked before and after instruction demonstrate that students are little affected by the
American Chemical Society, Washington, DC.
The goal of this safety guide is to enable students to take more responsibility for lab safety by using the Self-Audit System for Students and to understand the responsibility for safety shared by the institution through the development and maintenance of a Chemical Hygiene Plan. This student guide discusses safety equipment and the procedures…
Heidi Wilson Vacik; M. Christine Nagy; Peggy O. Jessee
The purpose of this study was to examine the perceptions of graduate students in the fields of nursing, social work, child life, and counseling education regarding children's understanding of illness concepts. Students were assessed as to their knowledge of children's perceptions of illness as described from a Piagetian developmental viewpoint. Eighty-five graduate students from a southern university in the fields
Joffrion, Heather Kyle
). One video taped lesson from each teacher was selected for in-depth analysis of the balance between conceptual teaching, procedural teaching, and classroom time that included neither. Student participants took pretest and posttest algebra tests...
Blank, Lisa M.
Over a decade ago the Conceptual Change Model (CCM) was introduced as an explanation of the science learning process. Central to this model is the assertion that knowledge is constructed when students restructure or replace existing conceptions. The model predicts that conceptual change will not occur without corresponding changes in the status of new and existing conceptions. While the CCM is extensively cited in the literature, little work has been done on clarifying whether a teaching strategy which requires students to reveal and reflect upon the status of their conceptions significantly impacts the nature and process of science learning. In response, this study explored the relationship between metacognitive teaching strategies, status, and conceptual change during a three month unit on ecology. Working collaboratively, the researcher and a seventh grade classroom teacher developed an ecology unit designed to facilitate conceptual change and reveal status-related interactions. Case studies of two classrooms were developed. Both classrooms received instruction based on the conceptual change model, but only one classroom's instructional format included a metacognitive element in which the student was encouraged to reveal and reflect upon the status of his or her conceptions--how they know what they know. Three significant findings were revealed in the results. One, the quality of classroom discourse in the metacognitive class was altered. By developing in students the ability to explicitly consider and talk about the condition of their own conceptions, students began to understand the value of critically investigating ideas before incorporating them into their knowledge structures. Two, while there was no statistically significant difference observed in the level of conceptual understanding across treatment groups, there was a significant difference observed on the scores of the delayed ecology post-assessment. While the students in the metacognitive class did not achieve higher levels of understanding of ecology, it is suggested that they more successfully accommodated the ideas of ecological processes into their long-term memory because of the formal metacognitive instruction. The third significant finding was that the practice of introducing energy flow after food chains and foods webs should be reconsidered as it was found to hinder student understanding.
We discuss the effect of administering conceptual and quantitative isomorphic problem pairs (CQIPP) back to back vs. asking students to solve only one of the problems in the CQIPP in introductory physics courses. Students who answered both questions in a CQIPP often performed better on the conceptual questions than those who answered the corresponding conceptual questions only. Although students often took advantage of the quantitative counterpart to answer a conceptual question of a CQIPP correctly, when only given the conceptual question, students seldom tried to convert it into a quantitative question, solve it and then reason about the solution conceptually. Even in individual interviews, when students who were only given conceptual questions had difficulty and the interviewer explicitly encouraged them to convert the conceptual question into the corresponding quantitative problem by choosing appropriate variables, a majority of students were reluctant and preferred to guess the answer to the conceptual question based upon their gut feeling.
Introductory engineering classes are often taught in large lecture halls, but due to a lack of laboratory apparatus, professors use chalk or erasers to demonstrate physical principles. "Imagine this chalk is a Gaussian sphere" is a phrase underclassmen hear and are expected to learn by. Clearly, easily accessible, illustrative instructional aids could facilitate learning complex engineering concepts. This paper describes a set of 5-minute demonstrations that are simple to execute, require very little equipment, and can be used to increase students' conceptual understanding. Each activity demonstrates a basic engineering principle taken from courses, such as Differential Equations, Physics, Circuits, and Thermodynamics - topics that are required classes for all disciplines. Emphasis is placed on convenience and ease of use by the professor, with most equipment small enough to carry in a pocket or briefcase. These demonstrations introduce a laboratory element into the lecture without the necessity of having a laboratory onsite.
Over the years, considerable rhetoric exists about which instructional strategies induce the largest conceptual and attitude gains in non-science majoring, undergraduate university students. To determine the effectiveness of lecture-based approaches in astronomy and astrobiology, we found that student scores on a 68-item pre-test/post-test concept inventory showed a statistically significant increase from 30% to 52% correct. In contrast, students evaluated after the use of Lecture-Tutorials increased to 72%. The Lecture Tutorials are intended for use during lecture by small student groups and compliment existing courses with conventional lectures. Based on extensive research on student understanding, Lecture-Tutorials offer professors an effective, learner-centered, classroom-ready alternative to lecture that does not require any outside equipment or drastic course revision for implementation. Each 15-minute Lecture-Tutorial poses a carefully crafted sequence of conceptually challenging, Socratic-dialogue driven questions, along with graphs and data tables, all designed to encourage students to reason critically about difficult concepts in astronomy and astrobiology.
Acar, Burcin; Tarhan, Leman
The present study focused on investigating the effectiveness of instruction via newly developed teaching materials based on cooperative learning when compared to a traditional approach, on ninth grade students’ understanding of metallic bonding. Fifty-seven ninth grade science students from two science classes in the same high school participated in this study. The same teacher taught metallic bonding with cooperative learning to an experimental group ( N = 28) and with a traditional teacher centred approach to a control group ( N = 29). Students’ conceptual understanding of metallic bonding was measured using the Metallic Bonding Concept Test. The results from the Student’s t test indicated that the mean score of the students in the experimental group was significantly higher in the experimental group (78.60, SD = 8.62), than in the control group (54.33, SD = 9.11) after treatment. In the light of the results from the concept test and individual interviews, the misconceptions related to metallic bonding were found less in the experimental group than traditional. Five of these misconceptions were firstly identified in this study. The individual interviews which were done with students from experimental group immediately after the instruction showed that students had positive perceptions about their cooperative work experiences.
Kathy Cabe Trundle; Ronald K. Atwood; John E. Christopher; Mesut Sackes
This study investigated the effect of non-traditional guided inquiry instruction on middle school students’ conceptual understandings\\u000a of lunar concepts. Multiple data sources were used to describe participants’ conceptions of lunar phases and their cause,\\u000a including drawings, interviews, and a lunar shapes card sort. The data were analyzed via a constant comparative method to\\u000a produce profiles of each participant’s conceptual understandings
Jones, Kevin C.
In this research report the author details a phenomenological study documenting identity development in student veterans making the transition from active military service to higher education. This study took place at a doctoral granting proprietary university with a significant veteran population and consisted of in-depth interviews. This…
Mosley, William G.
This study investigated the use of concept mapping as a pedagogical strategy to promote change in the learning styles of pre-nursing students. Students' individual learning styles revealed two subsets of students; those who demonstrated a learning style that favors abstract conceptualization and those who demonstrated a learning style that favors concrete experience. Students in the experimental groups performed concept mapping activities designed to facilitate an integrative understanding of interactions between various organ systems of the body while the control group received a traditional didactic instruction without performing concept mapping activities. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected in order to measure differences in student achievement. Analysis of the quantitative data revealed no significant change in the learning styles of students in either the control or experimental groups. Learning style groups were analyzed qualitatively for recurring or emergent themes that students identified as facilitating their learning. An analysis of qualitative data revealed that most students in the pre-nursing program were able to identify concepts within the class based upon visual cues, and a majority of these students exhibited the learning style of abstract conceptualization. As the laboratory experience for the course involves an examination of the anatomical structures of the human body, a visual identification of these structures seemed to be the most logical method to measure students' ability to identify anatomical structures.
Philpot, Cindy J.
Recent reform efforts in science education focus on scientific literacy for all citizens. In order to be scientifically literate, an individual must have informed understandings of nature of science (NOS), scientific inquiry, and science content matter. This study specifically focused on Science Olympiad students' understanding of NOS as one piece of scientific literacy. Research consistently shows that science students do not have informed understandings of NOS (Abd-El-Khalick, 2002; Bell, Blair, Crawford, and Lederman, 2002; Kilcrease and Lucy, 2002; Schwartz, Lederman, and Thompson, 2001). However, McGhee-Brown, Martin, Monsaas and Stombler (2003) found that Science Olympiad students had in-depth understandings of science concepts, principles, processes, and techniques. Science Olympiad teams compete nationally and are found in rural, urban, and suburban schools. In an effort to learn from students who are generally considered high achieving students and who enjoy science, as opposed to the typical science student, the purpose of this study was to investigate Science Olympiad students' understandings of NOS and the experiences that formed their understandings. An interpretive, qualitative, case study method was used to address the research questions. The participants were purposefully and conveniently selected from the Science Olympiad team at a suburban high school. Data collection consisted of the Views of Nature of Science -- High School Questionnaire (VNOS-HS) (Schwartz, Lederman, & Thompson, 2001), semi-structured individual interviews, and a focus group. The main findings of this study were similar to much of the previous research in that the participants had informed understandings of the tentative nature of science and the role of inferences in science, but they did not have informed understandings of the role of human imagination and creativity, the empirical nature of science, or theories and laws. High level science classes and participation in Science Olympiad did not translate into informed understandings of NOS. There were implications that labs with a set procedure and given data tables did not contribute to informed NOS understandings, while explicit instruction may have contributed to more informed understandings. Exploring these high achieving, Science Olympiad students' understandings of NOS was a crucial step to understanding what experiences formed these students' understandings so that teachers may better their practices and help more students succeed in becoming scientifically literate citizens.
Dunlap, Joanna C.; Furtak, Thomas E.; Tucker, Susan A.
The calculus-based, introductory physics course is the port of entry for any student interested in pursuing a college degree in the sciences, mathematics, or engineering. There is increasing demand for online delivery options that make the course more widely available, especially those that use best practices in student engagement. However,…
DEVELOPMENT AND AWARENESS OF FUNCTION UNDERSTANDING IN FIRST YEAR UNIVERSITY STUDENTS Olli function concept, and of their awareness of this development. Our study indicates that students' function and their awareness of it. Keywords: function, conceptual development, self-awareness, teacher education INTRODUCTION
This study explored two groups of Grade 11 (age 16-17) students' conceptual understandings about aspects of particle theory before, immediately after, and 3 months after instruction with multiple representations (IMR) and instruction with verbal representations (IVR). Data sources included open-ended questionnaires, interviews, and student…
Cavallo, Ann M. L.; White, Kevin J.; McCall, David
This study explored interrelationships among high school students' views about nature of science (NOS), acceptance of evolution, and conceptual understanding of evolution, and the extent to which these may have shifted from pre- to post-instruction on evolutionary theory. Eighty-one students enrolled in ninth-grade Biology responded to…
Fowler, Samantha R.
The purpose of this study was to explore the evolution science content used during college students' negotiation of biology-based socioscientific issues (SSI) and examine how it related to students' conceptual understanding and acceptance of biological evolution. Specific research questions were, (1a) what specific evolutionary science content do…
In this article, the students teachers' opinions, including rock formation and improper terms related to or different from these ideas, all of which are considered or must be considered in geology classes, have been analyzed. Alternative conception is used to inform our understanding of students teachers' ideas and describe any conceptual…
Stewart, Jim; Dale, Michael
Investigates high school students' understanding of the physical relationship of chromosomes and genes as expressed in their conceptual models and in their ability to manipulate the models to explain solutions to dihybrid cross problems. Describes three typical models and three students' reasoning processes. Discusses four implications. (YP)
Westbrook, Susan L.; Marek, Edmund A.
The conceptual views of homeostasis held by students (n=300) in seventh grade life science, tenth grade biology, and college zoology were examined. A biographical questionnaire, the results from two Piagetian-like developmental tasks, and a concept evaluation statement of homeostasis were collected from each student. Understanding of the concept…
Emergent processes are distinguished from non-emergent processes on the basis of the qualitative relationships among the agents' interactions and the causal relationships between the agents' interactions and the pattern. Research suggests students often have robust misconceptions about emergent processes (such as diffusion) because they do not have the mental model to interpret these processes This study investigates the extent to which a domain-general understanding of emergent processes can help provide students with an enhanced understanding of diffusion and osmosis This is a quasi-experimental study using non-equivalent groups design to compare the treatment and control groups. Sixty-six community college students enrolled in an introductory biology course comprised the participants. Students' prior knowledge about emergent processes, diffusion, and osmosis were assessed by pre-tests. The treatment group received the intervention -- an instructional module about the differences between scientific processes that are emergent versus processes that are non-emergent. The control group did not receive the intervention but received the process assessment to determine incoming knowledge about scientific processes and any gains in knowledge about scientific processes. Both groups received the same specific content instruction about diffusion and osmosis, which was derived from the regular and established curriculum for the course. Both groups were given post-tests to assess whether they learned the concepts, and whether they were able to achieve a deep understanding that resulted in a comprehension of the transport of substances across cell membranes and how that might be applied in particular health-related situations. Data were analyzed using t-tests and analysis of variance. No statistically significant differences were found between the two groups based on the learning measures Limitations include sample restrictions and not taking into account individual ability levels of the participants. In addition, the short length of this intervention may not provide adequate time for students to successfully acquire the schema to understand conceptually difficult science concepts such as diffusion and osmosis. Future directions of research include expanding the sample size and length of exposure to the intervention, in addition to examining the individual ability levels of the participants.
Zhu Guangtian; Singh, Chandralekha [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, 15260 (United States)
We describe the difficulties advanced undergraduate and graduate students have with quantum measurement. To reduce these difficulties, we have developed research-based learning tools such as the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) and peer instruction tools. A preliminary evaluation shows that these learning tools are effective in improving students' understanding of concepts related to quantum measurement.
Hopkins, Robert, II; Alberts, Halley
This activity is designed as a primer to teaching population dispersion analysis. The aim is to help improve students' spatial thinking and their understanding of how spatial statistic equations work. Students use simulated data to develop their own statistic and apply that equation to experimental behavioral data for Gambusia affinis (western…
Naah, Basil M.; Sanger, Michael J.
In a previous study, the authors identified several student misconceptions regarding the process of dissolving ionic compounds in water. The present study used multiple-choice questions whose distractors were derived from these misconceptions to assess students' understanding of the dissolving process at the symbolic and particulate levels. The…
Sturts, Jill R.; Mowatt, Rasul A.
Pedagogically, the term "bottleneck" refers to a moment when students may face barriers to understanding content in the process of learning. As instructors identify "bottlenecks" within their courses, they are faced with the challenge of how to best assist students in overcoming them. Further, most instructors want to know what selected teaching…
Lamis, Dorian A.; Lester, David
Suicide is currently the second leading cause of death among college students in the United States. This complex issue on college campuses is often overlooked, and this book combines the efforts from several leaders in the field of suicidology in an attempt to grasp a better understanding of college student suicide. The book is divided into four…
Weidman, John C.; DeAngelo, Linda; Bethea, Kathryn A.
This chapter describes the contribution of current research using the Weidman model of undergraduate socialization to understanding student identity development in college. It illustrates ways in which the framework can be used flexibly and adapted for studying impacts of multiple aspects of the college experience on diverse groups of students.
Zhu, Guangtian; Singh, Chandralekha
We describe the difficulties advanced undergraduate and graduate students have with quantum measurement. To reduce these difficulties, we have developed research-based learning tools such as the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) and peer instruction tools. A preliminary evaluation shows that these learning tools are effective in improving students' understanding of concepts related to quantum measurement.
MacKinnon, Gregory R.
The study of chemistry includes many abstract concepts that students may find difficult to understand. A fundamental yet troublesome part of introductory chemistry courses is the topic of electron configuration and specifically quantum-mechanical orbitals. In an effort to examine the way students internalize the concept of atomic orbitals and how…
Dawson, Vaille; Schibeci, Renato
Surveys (n=1116) 15-year-old students from 11 Western Australian schools to determine their understanding of and attitude towards recent advances in modern biotechnology. Discusses reasons for students' over-estimation of the use of biotechnology in society. Provides a rationale for the inclusion of biotechnology, a cutting edge science, in the…
Southey, Philip; Allie, Saalih; Demaree, Dedra
Density is an important, multifaceted concept that occurs at many levels of physics education. Previous research has shown that a primary instantiation of the concept, mass density, is not well understood by high school or university students. This study seeks to determine how students understand the broad concept of density, and whether particular aspects of their understanding are helpful in structuring the concept of charge density. Qualitative data were gathered in the form of questionnaires distributed to 172 freshmen comprising three different academic groups. Broad, open ended questions prompted for responses involving free writing and drawn diagrams. The data were analysed by an approach suggested by Grounded Theory. Using the theoretical lens of Conceptual Metaphor Theory, six underlying (foothold) concepts were identified in terms of which density was conceptualised: `filled container'; `packing'; `weight/heaviness'; `intensive property'; `floating/sinking'; `impenetrability/solidity'. The foothold concept of `packing' proved to be the most productive for conceptualising `charge density'.
This dissertation reports on a project to improve student understanding of the second law of thermodynamics. Through the administration of written questions and individual student interviews, we have identified a variety of specific conceptual and reasoning difficulties students have with the second law of thermodynamics and the related concept of entropy. In addition, we have identified student difficulties with the
Saglam, Murat; Millar, Robin
Although electromagnetism is an important component of upper secondary school physics syllabuses in many countries, there has been relatively little research on students' understanding of the topic. A written test consisting of 16 diagnostic questions was developed and used to survey the understanding of electromagnetism of upper secondary school…
O'Brien, Michael J.; Thompson, John R.
The Physics First movement--teaching a true physics course to ninth-grade students--is gaining popularity in high schools. There are several different rhetorical arguments for and against this movement, and it is quite controversial in physics education. However, there is no actual evidence to assess the success, or failure, of this substantial…
Nagle, Courtney; Moore-Russo, Deborah; Viglietti, Janine; Martin, Kristi
This study considers tertiary calculus students' and instructors' conceptualizations of slope. Qualitative techniques were employed to classify responses to 5 items using conceptualizations of slope identified across various research settings. Students' responses suggest that they rely on procedurally based conceptualizations of…
Musso, Mandi W; Barker, Alyse A; Proto, Daniel A; Gouvier, Wm Drew
Precedential rulings in recent capital murder trials may, in some cases, leave it up to a jury to determine whether or not an individual meets criteria for an intellectual disability (ID) and should be spared from the death penalty. Despite the potential for misconceptions about ID to bias decisions, few empirical studies have examined the public's conceptualizations of individuals with ID. This study sought to examine 890 college students' conceptualizations of the deficits involved in mild ID. Students were asked to respond to two online surveys about the cognitive and adaptive behavior deficits that people with mild ID may experience. While most students were correct about basic facts, such as ID is not contagious and not curable, there was no clear consensus regarding beliefs about individuals with ID getting married, having children, or engaging in other mainstream activities of adult living. Students' responses are examined in light of results of studies that identify and examine bona fide deficits and areas of successful mainstreaming among persons with ID. Implications of misconceptions are discussed. PMID:22093668
Bamwesiga, Penelope Mbabazi
Many governments believe that investing in human capital should increase citizens' employability, which is why it is often presented as a solution to the problems of knowledge-based economies and societies, rising unemployment rates and economic competiveness. The aim of this study is to understand employers' views regarding the employability of…
Rabin, Colette; Smith, Grinell
An ethic of care acknowledges the centrality of the role of caring relationships in moral education. Care ethics requires a conception of "care" that differs from the quotidian use of the word. In order to teach care ethics more effectively, this article discusses four interrelated ways that teachers' understandings of care differ…
Schema Theory-based Computational Approach to Support Children's Conceptual Understanding by Zukeri supporting their reasoning based on concrete objects and ideas. Human tutors normally use some dialogue. The design of such agents can be based on learning theories that explain how children understand new concepts
Shore, Mark A.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of the Casio 9850 and the TI-85 graphing calculators on college students' procedural skills and conceptual understanding in two different developmental mathematics courses. The courses used in this study were Elementary Algebra and Intermediate Algebra. Both the non-graphing calculator group…
Calik, Muammer; Ayas, Alipasa; Coll, Richard Kevin
This paper reports on the use of a constructivist-based pedagogy to enhance understanding of some features of solution chemistry. Pre-service science teacher trainees' prior knowledge about the dissolution of salts and sugar in water were elicited by the use of a simple diagnostic tool. The test revealed widespread alternative conceptions. These…
Zhu Guangtian; Singh, Chandralekha [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, 15260 (United States)
The Stern Gerlach experiment has played a central role in the discovery of spin angular momentum and it has also played a pivotal role in elucidating foundational issues in quantum mechanics. Here, we discuss investigation of students' difficulties related to the Stern Gerlach experiment by giving written tests and interviewing advanced undergraduate and graduate students in quantum mechanics. We also discuss preliminary data that suggest that the Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT) related to the Stern Gerlach experiment is helpful in improving students' understanding of these concepts.
Paul R. Pintrich
A conceptual framework for assessing student motivation and self-regulated learning in the college classroom is presented. The framework is based on a self-regulatory (SRL) perspective on student motivation and learning in contrast to a student approaches to learning (SAL) perspective. The differences between SRL and SAL approaches are discussed, as are the implications of the SRL conceptual framework for developing
May, David B.; Etkina, Eugenia
Explores self-reflection skills and views in the context of an introductory physics course for first-year engineering honors students. Measures students' conceptual learning gains using standard survey instruments. Finds that students with high conceptual gains tend to show reflection on learning that is more articulate and epistemologically…
Jeff Dodick; Nir Orion
There have been few discoveries in geology more important than deep time - the understanding that the universe has existed for countless millennia, such that man's existence is confined to the last milliseconds of the metaphorical geological clock. The influence of deep time is felt in a variety of sciences including geology, cosmology, and evolutionary biology. Thus, any student that
Gurwick, Noel P.
and processes than do students whose exposure has been limited to traditional classroom science teaching (SRI their understanding of the sociology of science. The research project focused on the impact of non-indigenous worms on the impact of a regional invasion of non-indigenous worm species on decomposition in forest soils. We chose
Bellam Sreenivasulu; R. Subramaniam
This study explored undergraduate students’ understanding of the chemistry topic of thermodynamics using a 4-tier diagnostic instrument, comprising 30 questions, and follow-up interviews. An additional objective of the study was to assess the utility of the 4-tier instrument for use in studies on alternative conceptions (ACs) as there has been no study done on it since its introduction in the
The software industry needs well-trained software designers and one important aspect of software design is the ability to model software designs visually and understand what visual models represent. However, previous research indicates that software design is a difficult task to many students. This article reports empirical findings from a…
Rose, Nancy L.
The purpose of this study was to explore student changes in conceptual development, epistemology, and motivations when evolution concepts are embedded and explicit reflective discourse is used in a unit for population ecology. The two research problems were: (1) What changes are observed in student's conceptual development, epistemology, and motivations when there is explicit reflective discourse within a population ecology unit with embedded evolution?, and (2) In what ways does explicit reflection influence students' mental models within a population ecology unit with embedded evolution? This mixed-method, quasi-experimental study assessed two regular high school biology classes in a small, urban, Midwestern high school. Students in this study had not studied evolution within any formal chapters, but had been immersed in a curriculum with embedded evolution. The study was conducted over a four-week period in a population ecology unit near the beginning of second semester. Instruction emphasized basic conceptions in population ecology. Five key intervention activities included evolutionary concepts as part of an embedded curriculum. The independent variable was explicit reflective discourse with one or two intervention questions after completion of these activities. Data included pre- and posttest surveys measuring (a) evolutionary understanding of natural selection, (b) science beliefs, and (c) science motivations. Written artifacts included (a) explanations to scenarios, (b) pre- and post-argument reflections revealing student's science beliefs and science motivations resultant from two argumentations, and (c) three, pre-, post-, and 6-week final concept maps constructed from 12 concepts. All data sources provided descriptive data. Conceptual change was interpreted from an ontological, epistemological, and motivational perspective. The experimental class receiving explicit reflective discourse showed greater overall increases in conceptual development. Students in both classes constructed teleological and proximate explanations. Overall, the experimental class gave greater numbers of evolutionary explanations. Scored propositions from concept maps showed a mixture of synthetic and scientific conceptions in both classes, however the experimental group showed greater scientific quality. Students in both classes exhibited direct-process ontology. Both classes had high degrees of epistemological and motivational commitments demonstrated by their engagement and subsequent improvements in conceptual development in both evolutionary and ecological conceptions.
Valentijn, Pim P.; Schepman, Sanneke M.; Opheij, Wilfrid; Bruijnzeels, Marc A.
Introduction Primary care has a central role in integrating care within a health system. However, conceptual ambiguity regarding integrated care hampers a systematic understanding. This paper proposes a conceptual framework that combines the concepts of primary care and integrated care, in order to understand the complexity of integrated care. Methods The search method involved a combination of electronic database searches, hand searches of reference lists (snowball method) and contacting researchers in the field. The process of synthesizing the literature was iterative, to relate the concepts of primary care and integrated care. First, we identified the general principles of primary care and integrated care. Second, we connected the dimensions of integrated care and the principles of primary care. Finally, to improve content validity we held several meetings with researchers in the field to develop and refine our conceptual framework. Results The conceptual framework combines the functions of primary care with the dimensions of integrated care. Person-focused and population-based care serve as guiding principles for achieving integration across the care continuum. Integration plays complementary roles on the micro (clinical integration), meso (professional and organisational integration) and macro (system integration) level. Functional and normative integration ensure connectivity between the levels. Discussion The presented conceptual framework is a first step to achieve a better understanding of the inter-relationships among the dimensions of integrated care from a primary care perspective. PMID:23687482
Tao, Ying; Oliver, Mary Colette; Venville, Grady Jane
Children have formal science instruction from kindergarten in Australia and from Year 3 in China. The purpose of this research was to explore the impact that different approaches to primary science curricula in China and Australia have on children's conceptual understanding of science. Participants were Year 3 children from three schools of high,…
Ying Tao; Mary Colette Oliver; Grady Jane Venville
Children have formal science instruction from kindergarten in Australia and from Year 3 in China. The purpose of this research was to explore the impact that different approaches to primary science curricula in China and Australia have on children's conceptual understanding of science. Participants were Year 3 children from three schools of high, medium and low socio-economic status in Hunan
Paris-Sud XI, Université de
A conceptual framework to understand retailers' logistics1 and transport organization illustrated38 * Corresponding author9 10 11 1 IFSTTAR,12 Production Systems, logistics, Transport Organisation as retailers, through in-house or51 outsourced logistics deliveries to points of sale, have a high share
Herrington, Deborah G.; Yezierski, Ellen J.
The recent revisions to the advanced placement (AP) chemistry curriculum promote deep conceptual understanding of chemistry content over more rote memorization of facts and algorithmic problem solving. For many teachers, this will mean moving away from traditional worksheets and verification lab activities that they have used to address the vast…
Murawska, Jaclyn Marie
This research study examined the development of 43 preservice elementary school teachers' conceptual understanding of place value after participating in a research-based constructivist unit of instruction in place value. The preservice teachers were enrolled in one of three terms of an elementary mathematics methods course in a private…
Speth, Elena Bray; Shaw, Neil; Momsen, Jennifer; Reinagel, Adam; Le, Paul; Taqieddin, Ranya; Long, Tammy
Mutation is the key molecular mechanism generating phenotypic variation, which is the basis for evolution. In an introductory biology course, we used a model-based pedagogy that enabled students to integrate their understanding of genetics and evolution within multiple case studies. We used student-generated conceptual models to assess understanding of the origin of variation. By midterm, only a small percentage of students articulated complete and accurate representations of the origin of variation in their models. Targeted feedback was offered through activities requiring students to critically evaluate peers' models. At semester's end, a substantial proportion of students significantly improved their representation of how variation arises (though one-third still did not include mutation in their models). Students' written explanations of the origin of variation were mostly consistent with their models, although less effective than models in conveying mechanistic reasoning. This study contributes evidence that articulating the genetic origin of variation is particularly challenging for learners and may require multiple cycles of instruction, assessment, and feedback. To support meaningful learning of the origin of variation, we advocate instruction that explicitly integrates multiple scales of biological organization, assessment that promotes and reveals mechanistic and causal reasoning, and practice with explanatory models with formative feedback. PMID:25185235
Friedler, Y.; And Others
This study identified students' conceptual difficulties in understanding concepts and processes associated with cell water relationships (osmosis), determined possible reasons for these difficulties, and pilot-tested instruments and research strategies for a large scale comprehensive study. Research strategies used included content analysis of…
Technology is becoming a more critical agent for supporting learning as well as research in science and engineering. In particular, technology-based tools in the form of simulations and virtual environments support learning using mathematical models and computational methods. The purpose of this research is to: (a) measure the value added in conveying Thermodynamics of materials concepts with a blended learning environment using computational simulation tools with lectures; and (b) characterize students' use of representational forms to convey their conceptual understanding of core concepts within a learning environment that blended Gibbs computational resource and traditional lectures. A mix-method approach was implemented that included the use of statistical analysis to compare student test performance as a result of interacting with Gibbs tool and the use of Grounded Theory inductive analysis to explore students' use of representational forms to express their understanding of thermodynamics of material concepts. Results for the quantitative study revealed positive gains in students' conceptual understanding before and after interacting with Gibbs tool for the majority of the concepts tested. In addition, insight gained from the qualitative analysis helped provide understanding about how students utilized representational forms in communicating their understanding of thermodynamics of material concepts. Knowledge of how novice students construct meaning in this context will provide insight for engineering education instructors and researchers in understanding students' learning processes in the context of educational environments that integrate expert simulation tools as part of their instructional resources for foundational domain knowledge.
Pereira, Mário; Caramelo, Liliana; Anacleto, Joaquim
In the last years, researchers have made efforts to evaluate how thermodynamical concepts and laws are being learned by students. In a previous study, we based our research on the answers to a test presented to a restrict number of university students. We have identified a number of specific difficulties such as the understanding of heat, temperature, work and internal energy concepts and applications of the first and second laws of thermodynamics to simple physical processes. In this work, we extend our study to students of other different university courses to realize how thermodynamics concepts and laws are being learned and understood. We are particularly interested how the university students are able to apply the first and second laws to irreversible processes. The methodology consists on the analysis of the results obtained with a questionnaire of multiple choice forms with only one correct answer. The investigation was carried in the University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, in Portugal, with students of several courses such as Forest, Environmental and Animal Science Engineering, Physics/Chemistry teaching among others. We found that many students had difficulties with the application of first and second laws to irreversible processes. Many others are misunderstanding the energy transfer signal convention.
Wagner, D. J.; Rivera, J. J.; Mateycik, Fran; Jennings, Sybillyn
This paper reports on methods used to probe student understandings of optical fibers and total internal reflection (TIR). The study was conducted as part of the expansion and improvement of web-based materials for an innovative introductory physics course. Initially, we conducted face-to-face Piaget-style interviews with a convenience sample. Our next step was to interview students taking the course at Rensselaer. Physical limitations necessitated that this be done from a distance, so we conducted "e-interviews" using a Chat Room. In this paper we focus on the e-interview experience, discussing similarities to and differences from the traditional face-to-face approach. In the process, we address how each method informs us about students' activation of prior experiences in making sense of unfamiliar phenomena (e.g., "transfer of learning").
Lobato, Joanne; Hohensee, Charles; Rhodehamel, Bohdan; Diamond, Jaime
Despite the proliferation of mathematics standards internationally and despite general agreement on the importance of teaching for conceptual understanding, conceptual learning goals for many K-12 mathematics topics have not been well-articulated. This article presents a coherent set of five conceptual learning goals for a complex mathematical…
Hu, Dehui; Rebello, N. Sanjay
Calculus is used across many physics topics from introductory to upper-division courses. The fundamental concepts of differentiation and integration are important tools for solving real-world problems involving nonuniformly distributed quantities. Research in physics education has reported students’ lack of ability to transfer their calculus knowledge to physics. In order to better understand students’ deficiencies, we collected data from group teaching or learning interviews as students solved physics problems requiring setting up integrals. We adapted the conceptual blending framework from cognitive science to make sense of the ways in which students combined their knowledge from calculus and physics to set up integrals. We found that many students were not able to blend their mathematics and physics knowledge in a productive way though they have the required mathematics knowledge. We discussed the productive and unproductive blends that students created when setting up integrals. The results of the study also suggested possible strategies to shifting students’ constructing of blends to more powerful ones.
Rosenblatt, Rebecca; Sayre, Eleanor C.; Heckler, Andrew F.
Students' difficulties with conceptual questions about force, velocity, and acceleration have been well documented. However, there has been no single systematic study of student understanding of all paired relations among the concepts of force, velocity, and acceleration. For example, a student who believes an object with a net force on it must be moving might not believe an accelerating object must be moving. In this paper, we describe the development of a test to build a more comprehensive picture of student understanding. We describe modifications to increase the validity of the test by reducing false positives and unwanted inconsistencies. We also report preliminary data suggesting that there are definite patterns in student understanding of the various relations between force, velocity, and acceleration. For example, there are a higher number of students reporting that force and velocity are directionally related then that acceleration and velocity are directionally related.
Lee, Chin-Quen; She, Hsiao-Ching
This article reports research from a 3 year digital learning project to unite conceptual change and scientific reasoning in the learning unit of combustion. One group of students had completed the course combining conceptual change and scientific reasoning. The other group of students received conventional instruction. In addition to the…
Reinfried, S.; Tempelmann, S.; Aeschbacher, U.
"Water knowledge" has now become a socio-political and future-orientated necessity. Erroneous notions or preconceptions of hydrology can have a deleterious effect on our understanding of the scientific facts and their interrelations that are of relevance to sustainable water management. This explorative pilot study shows that erroneous and naďve ideas about the origin of freshwater springs are common at the lower secondary level. The purpose of this study was two-fold: (1) to investigate the nature of misconceptions about freshwater springs among 13-year-old students, and (2) to develop an efficient instructional tool that promotes conceptual reconstruction in the learners' minds. To assess students' naďve ideas we conducted interviews, examined student work, and asked students to fill in a questionnaire. The identified naďve ideas were used to construct an instructional tool based on the findings of learning psychology aiming at promoting deep learning, thus facilitating a lasting conceptual reconstruction of the concept of freshwater springs.
Gina Navoa Svarovsky; David Williamson Shaffer
In this paper we describe a study that investigates whether - and how $authentic recreations of engineering practices can help students develop conceptual understanding of physics. We focus on the design-build-test cycle used by professional engineers in simulation-based design. In this experiment, middle school students worked for 10 hours to solve engineering design challenges using SodaConstructor - a Java-based microworld
Brunsell, Eric Steven
An achievement gap exists between White and Hispanic students in the United States. Research has shown that improving the quality of instruction for minority students is an effective way to narrow this gap. Science education reform movements emphasize that science should be taught using a science inquiry approach. Extensive research in teaching and learning science also shows that a conceptual change model of teaching is effective in helping students learn science. Finally, research into how Hispanic students learn best has provided a number of suggestions for science instruction. The Inquiry for Conceptual Change model merges these three research strands into a comprehensive yet accessible model for instruction. This study investigates two questions. First, what are teachers' perceptions of science inquiry and its implementation in the classroom? Second, how does the use of the Inquiry for Conceptual Change model affect the learning of students in a predominantly Hispanic, urban neighborhood. Five teachers participated in a professional development project where they developed and implemented a science unit based on the Inquiry for Conceptual Change model. Three units were developed and implemented for this study. This is a qualitative study that included data from interviews, participant reflections and journals, student pre- and post-assessments, and researcher observations. This study provides an in-depth description of the role of professional development in helping teachers understand how science inquiry can be used to improve instructional quality for students in a predominantly Hispanic, urban neighborhood. These teachers demonstrated that it is important for professional development to be collaborative and provide opportunities for teachers to enact and reflect on new teaching paradigms. This study also shows promising results for the ability of the Inquiry for Conceptual Change model to improve student learning.
Adams, April Dean; Chiappetta, Eugene L.
This study investigates the relationships between student beliefs about the nature of science, student attitudes, and conceptual change about the nature of forces in a traditional high school physics classroom. Students (N=28) in the study were junior-level high school honors students in an introductory physics class. The physics instruction was…
Barbara S. Metzner; John P. Bean
The purpose of this study was to estimate a conceptual model of nontraditional student attrition. Data were gathered from 624 nontraditional (commuter, part-time) freshmen at a midwestern urban university enrolling 22,000 students. For these nontraditional students, dropout was a function of GPA and credit hours enrolled, as well as the utility of education for future employment, satisfaction with the student
Westbrook, Susan L.
Compares the conceptual organization of students in an integrated algebra and physical science class (SAM 9) with that of students in a discipline-specific physical science class (PSO). Analysis of students' concept maps indicates that the SAM9 students used a greater number of procedural linkages to connect mathematics and science concepts than…
Maskiewicz, April Cordero; Griscom, Heather Peckham; Welch, Nicole Turrill
In this study, we used targeted active-learning activities to help students improve their ways of reasoning about carbon flow in ecosystems. The results of a validated ecology conceptual inventory (diagnostic question clusters [DQCs]) provided us with information about students' understanding of and reasoning about transformation of inorganic and…
Rosenblatt, Rebecca; Heckler, Andrew F.
We developed an instrument to systematically investigate student conceptual understanding of the relationships between the directions of net force, velocity, and acceleration in one dimension and report on data collected on the final version of the instrument from over 650 students. Unlike previous work, we simultaneously studied all six possible…
Kleine, Sarah Elizabeth
The goal of this thesis is to understand students' perceptions of examinations and how they affect their lives. Based on the lack of research regarding student perceptions of testing events, it is assumed that the student's voice has been perceived...
Morrison, Judith A.; Lederman, Norman G.
Research has established that students enter their science classes with ideas about the natural world that do not align with accepted scientific beliefs. The diagnosis of these student preconceptions may be seen as an initial, crucial step in the process of teacher-facilitated conceptual change. So as to capture what science teachers do in their…
Gennaro, Eugene D.
Three density questions were administered to 290 ninth-grade students to assess their understanding of this concept. Found two-thirds of students understand displacement and/or density concepts. Three solubility questions were administered to 385 ninth-graders to assess understandings of solubility. Found students have difficulty with some aspects…
Demastes, Sherry S.; Good, Ronald G.; Peebles, Patsye
Using conceptual change as a theoretical lens, the purpose of this study is to describe the structure of a learner's conceptual ecology within a specific content area (biological evolution) and to illustrate how this ecology influences the process of conceptual change. Data were gathered using participant observations in a high school Biology II classroom as well as a series of 17 open-ended and structured interviews with each of four research participants. The interviews were designed to illustrate the participants' approaches to biology as well as to describe their changing conceptual frameworks for evolutionary theory. Interview techniques used include: concept mapping, drawing interviews, discussion of pre- and posttests, and sorting tasks. A learner's conceptual ecology for evolution was found to include prior conceptions related to evolutionary theory (both scientific and alternative), scientific and religious orientations, view of the biological world, and acceptance of evolutionary theory. However, the data demonstrate that the actions of these aspects of the conceptual ecology can vary among individuals and no single controlling mechanism was isolated. Most importantly, the data demonstrate that conceptual change has significant affective cornponents as evidence is evaluated by learners and this evaluation is often based on extralogical criteria.
Kinchin, Ian M.
Presents materials to stimulate active learning through modified concept mapping activities designed to help students appreciate alternative perspectives by using cartoons as a stimulus and focusing on the links within a concept map fragment, and encouraging the probing of understanding by annotating the linking words. (Author/YDS)
Reinfried, S.; Tempelmann, S.; Aeschbacher, U.
"Water knowledge" has now become a socio-political and future-orientated necessity. Everyday ideas or preconceptions of hydrology can have a deleterious effect one people's understanding of the scientific facts and their interrelations that are of relevance to sustainable water management. This explorative pilot study shows that preconceived notions about the origin of freshwater springs are common at the lower secondary school level. The purpose of this study was two-fold: (1) to investigate the nature of everyday ideas about freshwater springs among 81 13-yr-old Swiss students, and (2) to develop an efficient instructional tool that promotes conceptual reconstruction in the learners' minds. To assess students' everyday ideas we conducted interviews, examined student work, and asked students to fill in a questionnaire. The results indicate that half of the students have some basic hydrological knowledge. However, several preconceived notions that can significantly impede the understanding of hydrological concepts have been found. A common preconception concerns the idea that solid rocks cannot be permeable and that large underground cavities constitute a necessary precondition for the formation of springs. While these ideas may well be true for karst springs they inhibit the understanding of the concept of other spring types due to their plausibility and intelligibility. We therefore chose the concept of the hillslope spring to construct an instructional tool that takes into account the findings of the psychology of learning aimed at promoting deep learning, thus facilitating a lasting conceptual reconstruction of the concept of springs.
Wirt, Lesley G.; Jaeger, Audrey J.
One fundamental aspect of engagement in higher education is faculty-student interaction (FSI). FSI has been associated with student success and persistence in both four- and two-year institutions. Due to limited research concerning diverse students, understanding student engagement in higher education is based on White, traditional-age students…
Taber, Keith S.
Two reasons are suggested for studying the degree of conceptual integration in student thinking. The linking of new material to existing knowledge is an important aspect of meaningful learning. It is also argued that conceptual coherence is a characteristic of scientific knowledge and a criterion used in evaluating new theories. Appreciating this…
Zulnaidi, Hutkemri; Zakaria, Effandi
The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of information mapping strategy on mathematics conceptual knowledge of junior high school students in Rokan Hulu Riau, Indonesia. The study also examined the relationship between mathematics conceptual knowledge and mathematics achievement. Using a quasi-experimental method, the study was…
Salleh, Romaizah; Venville, Grady J.; Treagust, David F.
With increasing numbers of students learning science through a second language in many school contexts, there is a need for research to focus on the impact language has on students’ understanding of science concepts. Like other countries, Brunei has adopted a bilingual system of education that incorporates two languages in imparting its curriculum. For the first three years of school, Brunei children are taught in Malay and then for the remainder of their education, instruction is in English. This research is concerned with the influence that this bilingual education system has on children’s learning of science. The purpose was to document the patterns of Brunei students’ developing understandings of the concepts of living and non-living things and examine the impact in the change in language as the medium of instruction. A cross-sectional case study design was used in one primary school. Data collection included an interview ( n = 75), which consisted of forced-response and semi-structured interview questions, a categorisation task and classroom observation. Data were analysed quantitatively and qualitatively. The results indicate that the transition from Malay to English as the language of instruction from Primary 4 onwards restricted the students’ ability to express their understandings about living things, to discuss related scientific concepts and to interpret and analyse scientific questions. From a social constructivist perspective these language factors will potentially impact on the students’ cognitive development by limiting the expected growth of the students’ understandings of the concepts of living and non-living things.
This paper charts the development of a conceptual model for student involvement in assessment practice. This development seeks, through an exploration of literature in the field, to locate pedagogy that: • Supports partnerships in assessment that lead to empowered autonomous learners. • Provides opportunities for student voice that support the student's growing ability to think critically about and take responsibility
Dunn, Laura B.; Iglewicz, Alana; Moutier, Christine
Objective: This article proposes and illustrates a conceptual model of medical student well-being. Method: The authors reviewed the literature on medical student stress, coping, and well-being and developed a model of medical student coping termed the "coping reservoir." Results: The reservoir can be replenished or drained by various aspects of…
Pintrich, Paul R.
A conceptual framework for assessing student motivation and self-regulated learning in the college classroom is presented. The framework is based on a self-regulatory (SRL) perspective on student motivation and learning in contrast to a student approaches to learning (SAL) perspective. The differences between SRL and SAL approaches are discussed,…
This study connected research on formative assessment, motivation, and conceptual change. In particular, it examined three research questions: (1) Can formative assessment improve students' motivational beliefs? (2) Can formative assessment improve students' achievement in science and bring about conceptual change? and (3) Are students' science achievement and conceptual change correlated with their motivational beliefs? Formative assessment in this study refers to assessments embedded in an inquiry-based curriculum. To answer those questions, a randomized experiment was conducted. One thousand and two 6th or 7th graders of 12 teachers in 12 different schools in six states participated in the study. The 12 teachers were matched in pairs and randomly assigned to the experimental and control group. The experimental group employed embedded formative assessments while teaching a science curriculum unit and the control group taught the same unit without formative assessments. All the students were given a motivation survey and one or more achievement tests at pre- and posttest. By comparing the experimental and control students' motivation and achievement scores at pretest and posttest, I examined whether the formative assessment treatment affected students' motivation, learning, and conceptual change. By correlating students' posttest motivation, achievement as well as conceptual change scores, I examined whether students' motivation was related to their achievement and conceptual change. Analyses indicated that, the embedded assessments used by the experimental group did not significantly influence students' motivation, achievement, or conceptual change compared to students in the control group. Most motivation beliefs were correlated with students' achievement in a way similar to what has been reported in the literature. They were not correlated with students' conceptual change scores as hypothesized. Teachers, as well as some contextual factors associated with teachers, were extremely influential on students' motivation, achievement, and conceptual change; teacher effects overshadowed the treatment effect. This study revealed many of the challenges and problems teachers, researchers and randomized experiments are likely to encounter. It also highlighted the difficulty and importance of high-fidelity formative assessment implementation. Finally, it suggested that a cognitive approach in studying conceptual change still has great value to further research.
Rashkovits, Rami; Lavy, Ilana
This study examines how Information Systems Engineering School students on the verge of their graduation understand the mechanism of exception handling. The main contributions of this paper are as follows: we construct a questionnaire aimed at examining students' level of understanding concerning exceptions; we classify and analyse the students'…
Dawson, Vaille; Carson, Katherine
This study investigated 438 Year 10 students (15 and 16 years old) from Western Australian schools, on their understanding of the greenhouse effect and climate change, and the sources of their information. Results showed that most students have an understanding of how the greenhouse effect works, however, many students merge the processes of the…
Walstad, William B.; Rebeck, Ken
Investigates whether International Economic Exchange Program (IEEP) seminars for teachers had a beneficial effect on the economic understanding of their students. Shows a larger increase in the economic understanding of students of teachers who participated in the IEEP seminars compared with students of teachers who did not. (RLH)
Reiss, Michael J.; Tunnicliffe, Sue Dale
Discusses students' understandings of their own internal structure. Analysis shows the extent to which student understanding increases with age and the degree to which students know more about some organs and organ systems than others. Gender differences in the drawings were generally not large and there were some intriguing differences in the…
Carlsson, Maj Asplund; Fulop, Marta; Marton, Ference
Studied the theories student teachers held about literary understanding through interviews with 25 Hungarian and 8 Swedish student teachers. Categories of theories captured a substantial portion of the variation in how literary understanding can be seen. Three central aspects of human understanding, variation, discernment, and simultaneity, could…
Horan, Sean M.; Chory, Rebecca M.; Goodboy, Alan K.
The purpose of this study was threefold: to (a) identify students' experiences of distributive, procedural, and interactional injustice; (b) to examine students' emotional responses to these unjust experiences; and (c) to investigate students' behavioral reactions to perceived injustice. Participants were 138 undergraduate students who provided…
Kanive, Rebecca; Nelson, Peter M.; Burns, Matthew K.; Ysseldyke, James
The authors' purpose was to determine the effects of computer-based practice and conceptual interventions on computational fluency and word-problem solving of fourth- and fifth-grade students with mathematics difficulties. A randomized pretest-posttest control group design found that students assigned to the computer-based practice…
Herrmann-Abell, Cari F.; Flanagan, Jean C.; Roseman, Jo Ellen
Students often have trouble understanding key biology ideas because they lack an understanding of foundational chemistry ideas. AAAS Project 2061 is collaborating with BSCS in the development a curriculum unit that connects core chemistry and biochemistry ideas in order to help eighth grade students build the conceptual foundation needed for high…
Grutsch, John Leo, Jr.
Laboratory activities in organic chemistry involve a mixture of sophisticated logic and empirical observation that requires the integration of mechanistic thought, laboratory technique, and problem-solving skills. In an effort to understand how students develop the thought processes and problem-solving skills necessary for laboratory work in organic chemistry, student understanding of how the interaction between a reaction system (reactants or starting material(s), reagent(s), and/or solvent), experimental variables (pH, temperature, concentrations, etc), provides a result of interest (yield, selectivity, purity, etc.) for an experiment performed in the organic chemistry laboratory was investigated through the collection of responses to questions posed on pre-laboratory quizzes followed by in-depth interviews during which student volunteers discussed their responses along with their experiences in the laboratory. The conceptual change theory of learning which assumes new conceptions are understood, judged, acquired, or rejected in a conceptual context was used as a theoretical paradigm to examine students responses to questions posed on pre-laboratory quizzes and transcripts of the interviews with student volunteers. Students were found to not have developed a mechanistic understanding of how the interaction between a reaction system (reactants or starting material(s), reagent(s), and/or solvent), experimental variables (pH, temperature, concentrations, etc), provides a result of interest (yield, selectivity, purity, etc.) for an experiment performed in the organic chemistry laboratory. However, students' prior exposure to and understanding of chemical concepts was found to simultaneously assist and hinder in their development of a partial mechanistic understanding of how a reaction system (reactants or starting material(s), reagent(s), and/or solvent), experimental variables (pH, temperature, concentrations, etc), interact to provide a result of interest (yield, selectivity, purity, etc.). Even though students were able to develop a partial mechanistic understanding, they still did not understand the rationale behind chemical or physical manipulation performed in the organic chemistry laboratory or how either may be applied to other experiments. Therefore, experiments performed in the organic chemistry laboratory became activities in which students gave little thought to what they were doing resulting in little meaningful learning, unsafe practices, and an unpleasant experience that demotivated students. To address this deficiency, instructors need to create an environment where students are allowed to develop an understanding of the role of reagents and reaction conditions in an experiment in order to acquire the knowledge and skills that permits them to develop a deep mechanistic understanding of how organic chemistry reactions are implemented in the organic chemistry laboratory.
Ross, Amanda Ann
The goal in mathematics has shifted towards an emphasis on both procedural knowledge and conceptual understanding. The importance of gaining procedural knowledge and conceptual understanding is aligned with Principles and ...
Curtright, Robert; Markwell, John; Emry, Randy
Describes a series of exercises intended to help students develop a better understanding of chromatography that employ plant pigments. A collaborative approach leads students to a level of competence that permits them to complete an open-ended exercise. (WRM)
Satchwell, Richard E.; Johnson, Scott D.
A quasi-experimental study explored the effect of functional flow diagrams on technical system understanding. An individualized field training package which contained schematic diagrams that illustrated an aircraft's electrical system was complimented with functional flow diagrams. In a 4-week treatment, a control group of 10 students enrolled in…
Hamza, Karim M.; Wickman, Per-Olof
Students' difficulties with learning science have generally been framed in terms of their generalized conceptual knowledge of a science topic as elicited through their explanations of natural phenomena. In this paper, we empirically explore what more goes into giving a scientific account of a natural phenomenon than giving such generalized…
Golden, B. W.; Lutz, B.
Given the complexity of the science involving climate change (IPCC, 2007), its lack of curricular focus within US K-12 schooling (Golden, 2009), and the difficulty in effecting conceptual change in science (Vosniadou, 2007), we sought to research middle school students' conceptions about climate change, in addition to how those conceptions changed during and as a result of a deliberately designed global climate change (GCC) unit. In a sixth grade classroom, a unit was designed which incorporated Argumentation-Driven Inquiry (Sampson & Grooms, 2010). That is, students were assigned to groups and asked to make sense of standard GCC data such as paleoclimate data from ice cores, direct temperature measurement, and Keeling curves, in addition to learning about the greenhouse effect in a modeling lesson (Hocking, et al, 1993). The students were then challenged, in groups, to create, on whiteboards, explanations and defend these explanations to and with their peers. They did two iterations of this argumentation. The first iteration focused on the simple identification of climate change patterns. The second focused on developing causal explanations for those patterns. After two rounds of such argumentation, the students were then asked to write (individually) a "final" argument which accounted for the given data. Interview and written data were analyzed prior to the given unit, during it, and after it, in order to capture complicated nuance that might escape detection by simpler research means such as surveys. Several findings emerged which promised to be of interest to climate change educators. The first is that many students tended to "know" many "facts" about climate change, but were unable to connect these disparate facts in any meaningful ways. A second finding is that while no students changed their entire belief systems, even after a robust unit which would seemingly challenge such, each student engaged did indeed modify the manner in which they discussed the validation of their beliefs. That is, we argue that the unit, and the emphases contained within the unit, resulted in the "epistemic scaffolding" of their ideas, to the extent that they shifted from arguing from anecdote to arguing based on other types of data, especially from line graphs. A third finding underscores prior research in conceptual change, indicating that learning, especially conceptual change, is not a strictly rational process. Students, and others, are highly influenced by extra rational factors, such as the given political, scientific, and/or religious leanings of their families, their own willingness to explore anomalies, and other factors. Given these known difficulties, it is critical to explore further research of this sort in order to better understand what students are actually thinking, and how that thinking is prone to change, modification, or not. Subsequently, K-12 strategies might be better designed, if that is indeed a priority of US/Western society.
This presentation focuses on how an educator experiences scientific research and how those experiences can help foster K-12 students’ understanding of research being conducted in Barrow, Alaska. According to Zhang and Fulford (1994), real-time electronic field trips help to provide a sense of closeness and relevance. In combination with experts in the field, the electronic experience can help students to better understand the phenomenon being studied, thus strengthening the student’s conceptual knowledge (Zhang & Fulford, 1994). During a seven day research trip to study the arctic sea ice, five rural Virginia teachers and their students participated in Skype sessions with the participating educator and other members of the Radford University research team. The students were able to view the current conditions in Barrow, listen to members of the research team describe what their contributions were to the research, and ask questions about the research and Alaska in general. Collaborations between students and scientist can have long lasting benefits for both educators and students in promoting an understanding of the research process and understanding why our world is changing. By using multimedia venues such as Skype students are able to interact with researchers both visually and verbally, forming the basis for students’ interest in science. A learner’s level of engagement is affected by the use of multimedia, especially the level of cognitive processing. Visual images alone do no promote the development of good problem solving skills. However, the students are able to develop better problem solving skills when both visual images and verbal interactions are used together. As students form higher confidence levels by improving their ability to problem solve, their interest in science also increases. It is possible that this interest could turn into a passion for science, which could result in more students wanting to become scientists or science teachers.
Cutri, Ramona Maile; Rogers, P. Clint; Montero, Fidel
This book presents a holistic approach to multicultural educational issues by viewing them in terms of the student as a physical, psychosocial, cognitive, ethical, and spiritual being. Conversely, these levels of a student's being cannot be seen apart from the student's cultural identities. This unique book demonstrates that, in a pluralistic…
Aiken, John M.; Caballero, Marcos D.; Douglas, Scott S.; Burk, John B.; Scanlon, Erin M.; Thoms, Brian D.; Schatz, Michael F.
Recently, the National Research Council's framework for next generation science standards highlighted "computational thinking" as one of its "fundamental practices". 9th Grade students taking a physics course that employed the Arizona State University's Modeling Instruction curriculum were taught to construct computational models of physical systems. Student computational thinking was assessed using a proctored programming assignment, written essay, and a series of think-aloud interviews, where the students produced and discussed a computational model of a baseball in motion via a high-level programming environment (VPython). Roughly a third of the students in the study were successful in completing the programming assignment. Student success on this assessment was tied to how students synthesized their knowledge of physics and computation. On the essay and interview assessments, students displayed unique views of the relationship between force and motion; those who spoke of this relationship in causal (rather than observational) terms tended to have more success in the programming exercise.
Johnson, David R.
Few studies have been conducted on nontraditional student attrition in postsecondary vocational educational programs. This lack of attention is due to methodological limitations, lack of priority on data collection in vocational education, and lack of perceived need for research. The conceptual model of student attrition in postsecondary…
Van Dooren, Wim; De Bock, Dirk; Janssens, Dirk; Verschaffel, Lieven
The overreliance on linear methods in students' reasoning and problem solving has been documented and discussed by several scholars in the field. So far, however, there have been no attempts to assemble the evidence and to analyze it is a systematic way. This article provides an overview and a conceptual analysis of students' tendency to use…
Zhang, Ting; Torney-Purta, Judith; Barber, Carolyn
In 2 related studies framed by social constructivism theory, the authors explored a fine-grained analysis of adolescents' civic conceptual knowledge and skills and investigated them in relation to factors such as teachers' qualifications and students' classroom experiences. In Study 1 (with about 2,800 U.S. students), the authors identified 4…
This study investigated the effectiveness of conceptual change texts in remediating high school students' alternative conceptions concerning chemical equilibrium. A quasi-experimental design was used in this study. The subjects for this study consisted of a total 78 tenth-grade students, 38 of them in the experimental group and 40 of them in the…
Leppavirta, J.; Kettunen, H.; Sihvola, A.
Complex multistep problem exercises are one way to enhance engineering students' learning of electromagnetics (EM). This study investigates whether exposure to complex problem exercises during an introductory EM course improves students' conceptual and procedural knowledge. The performance in complex problem exercises is compared to prior success…
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of peer instruction on college students' conceptual learning, motivation, and self-efficacy in an algebra-based introductory physics course for nonmajors. Variables were studied via a quasi-experiment, Solomon four-group design on 123 students. Treatment groups were taught by peer instruction.…
Loverude, Michael E.; Kautz, Christian H.; Heron, Paula R. L.
This paper is the first of two that describe how research on student understanding of Archimedes' principle is being used to guide the development of instructional materials on this topic. Our results indicate that standard instruction on hydrostatics leaves many science and engineering majors unable to predict and explain the sinking and floating behavior of simple objects. A number of serious and persistent difficulties with the concepts and principles used to analyze such behavior are identified. Although some of these difficulties are specific to the concept of the buoyant force, many others seem to reflect lingering confusion about concepts that are widely assumed to be understood by students before the study of hydrostatics begins.
Casperson, Janet Marie
Learning is typically thought of as a change in a student's understanding within a single context. The term context is used here to describe a domain or subdomain of knowledge. Students' previous understandings of the context are known to play a considerable role in such learning. Another important kind of learning is reasoning across contexts. Through reasoning across contexts, students' understanding of one context influences understanding of another context. This dissertation investigated the role of students' previous understandings in this reasoning process. Psychology research has employed one type of experimental design to investigate reasoning across contexts. This has resulted in focus on a particular way of reasoning across contexts, called analogical transfer, in which participants' previous understandings play a minimal role. In contrast, this dissertation employed a case study design for the purpose of investigating the role of participants' previous understandings in reasoning across contexts. Participants' previous understandings of contexts were discovered to play a considerable role in their reasoning across contexts. Three categories of ways of reasoning across contexts in which students' previous understandings play a role were identified. In the first of these, a participant's new understanding of a context is a combination of ideas used previously to understand the same context and ideas used to understand another context. In the second, an idea from either the participant's previous understanding or from the participant's understanding of another context is modified to contribute to a new understanding. In the third, an idea from the participant's previous understanding is brought into different focus through comparison with a corresponding idea from another context. These three are termed combining, modifying, and refocusing interactions, respectively. Understanding of these different possible roles for students' previous understandings in reasoning across contexts can inform instruction in which a general concept is instructed through particular contexts. An example of such a general concept is the concept of equilibration considered here.
Ajredini, Fadil; Izairi, Neset; Zajkov, Oliver
This research investigates the influence of computer simulations (virtual experiments) on one hand and real experiments on the other hand on the conceptual understanding of electrical charging. The investigated sample consists of students in the second year (10th grade) of three gymnasiums in Macedonia. There were two experimental groups and one…
. Freshmen seem to work better with partners with similar Myers Briggs personality type. Students' self programming, compatibility, computer science classroom, collaboration, Myers Briggs 1 INTRODUCTION The authors
. Freshmen seem to work better with partners with different Myers Briggs personality type. Students' self programming, compatibility, computer science classroom, collaboration, Myers Briggs 1 INTRODUCTION The authors
Electricity and magnetism are important topics in physics. Research shows that students have many common difficulties in understanding concepts related to electricity and magnetism. However, research to improve students' understanding of electricity and magnetism is limited compared to introductory mechanics. This thesis explores issues…
Examinations greatly influence course structures and student study strategies. A course for students in the civil and environmental engineering programme at Lulea University of Technology was reconstructed with the aim of increasing levels of understanding. A simple written test was designed to assess low levels of understanding (definitions,…
During the recent years, there has been an increase in the number of the studies on students' understanding of the basic concepts and the data provided by those studies show that students do not seem to gain a scientific and thorough understanding of them. The usual starting point when carrying out such studies has been the aim of reviewing the
Watson, Rod; And Others
Interviews of and questionnaires given to (n=299) 14- and 15-year-old students in England and Spain on their understanding of combustion and on the teaching and learning styles used with students found that the extensive use of practical work in English schools had only a marginal effect on their understanding of combustion. Includes…
Young, R. Michael
RESEARCH ARTICLE Understanding and Predicting Student Self-Regulated Learning Strategies in Game in computer-based learning environ- ments. Consequently, understanding students' self-regulated learning-time has proven challenging. This paper presents an initial investigation into self- regulated learning
Clark, Douglas; Reynolds, Stephen; Lemanowski, Vivian; Stiles, Thomas; Yasar, Senay; Proctor, Sian; Lewis, Elizabeth; Stromfors, Charlotte; Corkins, James
This study investigates the strategies and assumptions that college students entering an introductory physical geology laboratory use to interpret topographic maps, and follows the progress of the students during the laboratory to analyze changes in those strategies and assumptions. To elicit students' strategies and assumptions, we created and…
William W. Cobern
The research reported in this article addressed the fundamental question, What do students believe about the nature of the world around them? The research specifically addressed college students' fundamental beliefs about nature, that is, the natural world. Data were collected via semistructured interviews involving a set of elicitation devices used to encourage students to talk about the natural world. The
A. R. J. Briggs; J. Clark; I. Hall
This article explores challenges in ensuring effective student transition from school or college to university. It examines the complex liaison needed for students to progress to appropriate courses, settle into university life and succeed as higher education learners. Secondary data (international literature on transition and the formation of learner identity) are analysed to identify underpinning concepts. Primary data are taken
Hittleman, Daniel R.
Silent students are often actively involved in classroom learning despite appearances to the contrary, and teachers can use special instructional strategies to guide them to overt participation. Students with "communication apprehension" are often assumed to have low intelligence, but they may suffer instead from shyness, various communication…
Briggs, A. R. J.; Clark, J.; Hall, I.
This article explores challenges in ensuring effective student transition from school or college to university. It examines the complex liaison needed for students to progress to appropriate courses, settle into university life and succeed as higher education learners. Secondary data (international literature on transition and the formation of…
McIntosh, Julie; White, Sandra; Suter, Robert
Students within the Findlay, Ohio, City School District, as well as students across the country, struggle with understanding physical and chemical changes. Therefore, in this article, the authors suggest some standards-based activities to clarify misconceptions and provide formative assessments to measure your students' progress as they determine…
Understanding students' poor performance on mathematical problem solving in physics Jonathan introductory, algebra-based physics students perform poorly on mathematical problem solving tasks in physics. There are at least two possible, distinct reasons for this poor performance: (1) Students lack the mathematical
Guven, Bulent; Baki, Adnan
This article presents an exploratory study aimed at the identification of students' levels of understanding in spherical geometry as van Hiele did for Euclidean geometry. To do this, we developed and implemented a spherical geometry course for student mathematics teachers. Six structured, "task-based interviews" were held with eight student…
Lawson, Timothy J.; Haubner, Richard R.; Bodle, James H.
To help beginning psychology students understand how they are influenced by social pressures to conform, we developed a demonstration designed to elicit their conformity to a small group of students standing in the hallway before class. Results showed the demonstration increased students' recognition of their own tendency to conform, knowledge of…
Mueller, John A.
The purpose of this study was to examine and understand atheist college students' views on faith and how they experience the college campus as a result. I conducted interviews with 16 undergraduate and graduate self-identified atheist college students. Students discussed losing faith and transitioning to atheism; making meaning of life, death, and…
Michael C. Wittmann; Richard N. Steinberg; Edward F. Redish
Student learning of sound waves can be helped through the creation of group-learning classroom materials whose development and design rely on explicit investigations into student understanding. We describe reasoning in terms of sets of resources, i.e. grouped building blocks of thinking that are commonly used in many different settings. Students in our university physics classes often used sets of resources
Wang, Z. W.; Willoughby, T. L.
This paper describes a method of understanding student problem-solving behavior during computer-assisted instruction using trigonometry as the example domain. Instead of attempting to model the student's process for solving problems, techniques which infer the equivalence between two adjacent steps in the student's process are used to determine…
Students within the Findlay, Ohio, City School District, as well as students across the country, struggle with understanding physical and chemical changes. Therefore, in this article, the authors suggest some standards-based activities to clarify misconceptions and provide formative assessments to measure your students’ progress as they determine the difference between chemical and physical changes.
Caskey, Nourah Al-Rashid
Field trips are a basic and important, yet often overlooked part of the student experience. They provide the opportunity to integrate real world knowledge with classroom learning and student previous personal experiences. Outdoor guided field trips leave students with an increased understanding, awareness and interest and in science. However, the…
In their paper, Martinez, Solanto, and Jiminez compared a number of methodologies used to describe students' understandings of scientific conceptions. One of the issues raised by the authors was the lack of a theoretical platform based in the area of cognition upon which the data were analysed. This paper investigates students' understandings of diffusion through the application of a cognitive structural perspective provided by the Structure of the Observed Learning Outcome model devised by Biggs and Collis. In this study, 60 senior secondary school and 120 first-year university science students were presented with two extended response questions regarding diffusion. Four months after the completion of the questionnaires, 30 students were interviewed. The responses obtained from the students were interpreted using the Structure of the Observed Learning Outcome model. The results from the study provided strong evidence of a pathway of conceptual understanding of diffusion from simple intuitive ideas about movement to highly abstract views in which students explained the random motion of molecules in terms of kinetic theory. These results were consistent for both the high school and university students. In addition, the pathway provided a means of interpreting previous research results and practical ways of improving instruction in the future.
Shamos, Michael I.
Understanding Cryptography Â A Textbook for Students and Practitioners by Christof Paar and Jan prepared by Stefan Heyse and Christof Paar and Jan Pelzl #12;2/22 Chapter 11 of Understanding Cryptography book "Understanding Cryptography" by Springer and the author's names must remain on each slide
Shamos, Michael I.
Understanding Cryptography Â A Textbook for Students and Practitioners by Christof Paar and Jan prepared by Georg Becker, Christof Paar and Jan Pelzl #12;2/26 Chapter 10 of Understanding Cryptography book "Understanding Cryptography" by Springer and the author's names must remain on each slide
Zilembo, Melanie; Monterosso, Leanne
A recent study undertaken by the authors (2007) highlighted that undergraduate nursing students were subjected to varying experiences in clinical practice, which were mediated by a number of factors. Mediating factors included continuity of preceptors, student attitudes, the clinical setting environment, student and preceptor expectations of the clinical practice experience and interactions between the student and preceptor. Of note, interactions with preceptors were seen to 'make or break' the practical experience. Therefore, the relationship that is forged between preceptor and student is vital in shaping the student's experience of the clinical area and of the real world of nursing work. Early positive socialisation experiences have been shown to improve retention rates of new nurses (Greene & Puetzer 2002), which are issues of prime concern in an era of worsening nursing shortages at all levels of the profession. A conceptual framework designed to guide preceptorship may help alleviate some of the difficulties experienced by undergraduate nurses in building relationships within the complex interactions of the nursing environment. The framework proposed in this paper offers a conceptual model that links positive preceptor leadership qualities (such as compassion, care and empathy) with student characteristics. This model proposes that synergistic interactions between nursing students and preceptors results in positive implications for the nursing workforce. This framework also has the potential for further development to fill the void created by a lack of conceptual guidance for supervisory interactions within the undergraduate clinical context. PMID:19072195
Zeilik, Michael; Schau, Candace; Mattern, Nancy
Reports on a long-term, large-scale study of a one-semester, conceptually-based, introductory astronomy course with data from more than 400 students over three semesters at the University of New Mexico. Finds that novice students show large, positive gains on assessments of conceptual understanding and connected understanding of the knowledge…
Neill, William H.; Miller, John M.; Van Der Veer, Henk W.; Winemiller, Kirk O.
Present data and our application of logic do not permit confident rejection of the null hypothesis: Interannual variation in recruitment of marine fishes (typified by certain flatfishes) is independent of ecophysiological factors. Our inability to reject this hypothesis reflects not its likely validity, but rather a lack of conceptual structure and appropriate data for realistic evaluation of alternative hypotheses. Therefore, in this paper, we set aside as presently intractable the problem of understanding in any generalizable way the specific effects of environment on interannual variation in marine fish recruitment. Instead, we return to a conceptual scheme first proposed almost 50 years ago by F.E.J. Fry for considering effects of environmental factors on the physiology of fishes. We first extend this scheme to population-level responses, including recruitment, and then even further, to community/ecosystem-level responses. Fry supposed that all of environment can be resolved into five classes of physiological effects—controlling (which set the pace of metabolism), limiting (which constrain maximum metabolism), lethal (which completely interdict metabolism), masking (which increase obligatory metabolic work), and directive (which release and unload metabolism by guiding enviroregulatory responses). We suggest that corresponding effects can be recognized at the levels both of population and community/ecosystem. The key analogy is that environment operates on individuals through metabolism, on populations through recruitment, and on communities/ecosystems through abiotic and biotic diversification. In the context of marine-fish populations, we propose that scope for population increase is the difference between maximum and maintenance recruitment to the spawning stock. Maintenance recruitment is the product of critical spawner density and spawner mortality rate; this product varies with environment as the resultant of controlling effects on the metabolism of individuals, and is increased by loading due to masking factors— e.g., predation—that increase one or both multiplicands. Maximum recruitment is limited by deficiencies of resources, primarily food, but also, potentially, by low spawner density. Population-level lethal factors cause extinction, by reducing population scope to sub-zero values for a time exceeding the generation interval. Directive factors distribute the population in space and time, influencing not only habitat use and zoogeographic range, but also providing context for genetic adaptation and speciation. Exploration of this conceptual scheme from the perspective of flatfish life-history strategies and population dynamics, leads to several testable ecophysiological hypotheses about recruitment.
Cobern, William W.
Data were collected via semistructured interviews on female college students views about the natural world. Fundamental beliefs are presented as a concept map and characterized by bipolar descriptive codes. The most intriguing observation of the study was science's apparent lack of influence on students' beliefs about nature even though these…
Zoda, Pamela; Combs, Julie P.; Slate, John R.
In this article, we reviewed the empirical literature concerning the relationship between school size and student performance with a focus was on determining the extent to which school size, specifically elementary school size, was related to student academic achievement. Most of the extant literature was on secondary school size with fewer…
Roth, Kathleen J.
In order to study why students have difficulty learning from science textbooks, this study investigated how middle school students use textbooks and how their thinking about one science concept (photosyntheis) was influenced by the reading of three different science texts. One of the texts used was an experimental one written to challenge and…
HELEN L. CHEN; LISA R. LATTUCA; ERIC R. HAMILTON
The concept of student engagement, now prominent in the engi- neering education and higher education communities, has a long intellectual history. Yet only recently has attention focused on the role that faculty play as designers of educational environments to support student engagement. Drawing from examples and data from the Engineering Change study (which evaluated the impact of the new EC2000
Comeaux, Eddie; Harrison, C. Keith
Concern over the academic talent development of Division I student-athletes has led to increased research to explain variations in their academic performance. Although a substantial amount of attention has been given to the relationship between student-athletes and their levels of academic success, there remain critical theoretical and analytical…
Proper documentation of strategies and results is crucially important for identifying problems and benchmark successes in the education of special needs students. In this article, the author shares the guidelines he provides to teachers at his school in the hopes of minimizing administrative tasks while ensuring that educators are familiar with…
Alberta Dept. of Education, Edmonton. Special Educational Services Branch.
This booklet was developed to provide students with some basic information on suicide. It describes the symptoms of depression and discusses the relationship between depression and suicide. Several important warning signs which may indicate that a person is considering suicide are presented, including physical, emotional, and behavioral signs.…
Gurwick, Noel P.; Krasny, Marianne E.
Presents an authentic semi-guided student research project. Studies the impact of a regional invasion of non-indigenous worm species on decomposition in forest soils. Describes the experimental design, data analysis, and interpretation of the data. (Contains 16 references.) (YDS)
Steinmeyer, Allison Paige
This article presents the author's profile. The author is an enrolled member of the Comanche Tribe and a descendant of the last leader of the Quahada Band. Currently, she attends Comanche Nation College in Lawton, Oklahoma, where she is a junior-level student majoring in both biology and chemistry with a minor in non-romance languages. From…
Ebert, Ellen Kress
This study used the "Relevance of Science Education" (ROSE) survey (Sjoberg & Schreiner, 2004) to examine topics of interest and perspectives of secondary science students in a large school district in the southwestern U.S. A situated learning perspective was used to frame the project. The research questions of this study focused on…
Eick, Charles J.; Dias, Michael; Smith, Nancy R. Cook
A new National Science Foundation supported curriculum, Interactions in Physical Science[TM], was evaluated on students' conceptual change in the twelve concept areas of the national physical science content standard (B) for grades 5-8. Eighth grade students (N = 66) were evaluated pre and post on a 31-item multiple-choice test of conceptual…
Dodick, Jeff; Orion, Nir
There have been few discoveries in geology more important than "deep time"--the understanding that the universe has existed for countless millennia, such that man's existence is confined to the last milliseconds of the metaphorical geological clock. The influence of deep time is felt in a variety of sciences including geology, cosmology, and…
Urquhart, Robin; Sargeant, Joan; Grunfeld, Eva
Moving knowledge into practice and the implementation of innovations in health care remain significant challenges. Few researchers adequately address the influence of organizations on the implementation of innovations in health care. The aims of this article are to (1) present 2 conceptual frameworks for understanding the organizational factors…
Shipman, H. L.
Students often have difficulties in appreciating just how old the earth and the universe are. While they can simply memorize a number, they really do not understand just how big that number really is, in comparison with other, more familiar student referents like the length of a human lifetime or how long it takes to eat a pizza. (See, e.g., R.D. Trend 2001, J. Research in Science Teaching 38(2): 191-221) Students, and members of the general public, also display such well-known misconceptions as the "Flintstone chronology" of believing that human beings and dinosaurs walked the earth at the same time. (In the classic American cartoon "The Flintstones," human beings used dinosaurs as draft animals. As scientists we know this is fiction, but not all members of the public understand that.) In an interdisciplinary undergraduate college class that dealt with astronomy, cosmology, and biological evolution, I used a familiar activity to try to improve student understanding of the concept of time's vastness. Students walked through a pre-determined 600-step path which provided a spatial analogy to the geological time scale. They stopped at various points and engaged in some pre-determined discussions and debates. This activity is as old as the hills, but reports of its effectiveness or lack thereof are quite scarce. This paper demonstrates that this activity was effective for a general-audience, college student population in the U.S. The growth of student understandings of the geological time scale was significant as a result of this activity. Students did develop an understanding of time's vastness and were able to articulate this understanding in various ways. This growth was monitored through keeping track of several exam questions and through pre- and post- analysis of student writings. In the pre-writings, students often stated that they had "no idea" about how to illustrate the size of the geological time scale to someone else. While some post-time walk responses simply restated what was done in the walk through time, some students were able to develop their own ways of conceptualizing the vastness of the geological time scale. A variety of findings from student understandings will be presented. This work has been supported in part by the Distinguished Scholars Program of the National Science Foundation (DUE-0308557).
Ritchie, Stephen M.
Studies a teacher's role and actions in a science learning community. Interprets two teaching episodes that illustrate how the teacher helps a group of students transform their understanding of electrical circuits. Contains 26 references. (DDR)
Athanasiou, Kyriacos; Papadopoulou, Penelope
In this study, we explored some of the factors related to the acceptance of evolution theory among Greek university students training to be teachers in early childhood education, using conceptual ecology for biological evolution as a theoretical framework. We examined the acceptance of evolution theory and we also looked into the relationship…
The article deals with the implementation of the cultural-historical activity theory (Vygotsky, Leontpsilaev, Engestrom, etc.) as the conceptual basis in the design of a creative online course model in English for specific purposes (ESP) for engineering students at university. The article describes the basic principles in the selection of the online study content, its organization and delivery. It focuses on
Tongchai, Apisit; Sharma, Manjula Devi; Johnston, Ian D.; Arayathanitkul, Kwan; Soankwan, Chernchok
We recently developed a multiple-choice conceptual survey in mechanical waves. The development, evaluation, and demonstration of the use of the survey were reported elsewhere [A. Tongchai et al. Int. J. Sci. Educ. 31 2437 (2009)]. We administered the survey to 902 students from seven different groups ranging from high school to second year…
Brookes, David T.; Etkina, Eugenia
This paper introduces a theory about the role of language in learning physics. The theory is developed in the context of physics students and physicists talking and writing about the subject of quantum mechanics. We found that physicists' language encodes different varieties of analogical models through the use of grammar and conceptual metaphor.…
Zavala, Genaro; Barniol, Pablo
In this article we investigate students' understanding of dot product as a projection. In the first part, we compare students' performance in three isomorphic multiple-choice problems: no-context, work and electric flux. We administered one of the three problems to 422 students who were in the process of completing required introductory physics courses. In the second part, we analyze the students' ability to connect the physical concepts with the dot product's formal representation. We carried out interviews with 14 students, in which they were asked to solve the same three isomorphic problems. Following the tests, we found a difference that was statistically significant: both physical context problems helped students select the projection interpretation option. However, the percentages of students that selected this option remained very low in the three problems. Moreover, during the interviews we noticed that students had serious difficulties in developing a coherent conceptual framework between the physical concepts and the dot product's formal representation.
Reed, Michelle K.
Schools following the Montessori philosophy use individual and small-group teaching methods and hands-on, concrete materials. This study investigated the understanding of place value concepts and abilities of Montessori students by comparing interview task responses of 93 students in grades 1-3 in a Montessori school (n = 47) and in a mostly…
David Rosengrant; Alan van Heuvelen; Eugenia Etkina
Physics education literature recommends using multiple representations to help students understand concepts and solve problems. However, there is little research concerning why students use the representations and whether those who use them are more successful. This study addresses these questions using free-body diagrams (diagrammatic representations used in problems involving forces) as a type of representation. We conducted a two-year quantitative
Kennedy, Peter E.
Explains that econometrics is an intellectual game played by rules based on the sampling distribution concept. Contains explanations for why many students are uncomfortable with econometrics. Encourages instructors to use explain-how-to-bootstrap exercises to promote student understanding. (RLH)
Understanding How Students Use Physical Ideas in Introductory Biology Courses Jessica Watkins1 and Instruction, 3 Department of Cell Biology & Molecular Genetics University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742 are in- vestigating students' views about the role of physics in introductory biology courses. This paper
Minogue, James; Guentensberger, Todd
One set of ideas at the core of the National Science Education Standards (NSES) Science and Technology Standards is that of engaging middle school students in activities that help them develop their understandings of technological design. More precisely, students should be able to identify appropriate problems for technological design, design a…
Rogers, Kevin L.
The purpose of this study was to examine the attitudes toward and understanding of economics possessed by Doctor of Education students in Adult and Higher Education that were enrolled at The University of South Dakota. The study further sought to find areas or topics of interest in the field of economics that Doctor of Education students possess,…
Wittmann, Michael C.; Steinberg, Richard N.; Redish, Edward F.
Explains the design and development of curriculum materials that ask students to think about physics from a different view. These group-learning classroom materials specifically aim to bring about improvement of student understanding of sound waves. (Contains 29 references.) (Author/SOE)
This paper will provide the reader with an understanding of how domestic violence affects the behavior of high school students. The presentation is designed to provide the reader with a working definition of domestic violence, the rate of occurrence and its effects on high school students. Additionally the paper will summarize the negative effects…
Haciomeroglu, Erhan Selcuk; Aspinwall, Leslie; Presmeg, Norma C.
This study adds momentum to the ongoing discussion clarifying the merits of visualization and analysis in mathematical thinking. Our goal was to gain understanding of three calculus students' mental processes and images used to create meaning for derivative graphs. We contrast the thinking processes of these three students as they attempted to…
Dimitriadi, Kyriaki; Halkia, Krystallia
A major topic that has marked "modern physics" is the theory of special relativity (TSR). The present work focuses on the possibility of teaching the basic ideas of the TSR to students at the upper secondary level in such a way that they are able to understand and learn the ideas. Its aim is to investigate students' learning processes towards the…
Libarkin, Julie C.; Asghar, Anila; Crockett, C.; Sadler, Philip
The importance of nonvisible wavelengths for the study of astronomy suggests that student understanding of nonvisible light is an important consideration in astronomy classrooms. Questionnaires, interviews, and panel discussions were used to investigate 6-12 student and teacher conceptions of ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR). Alternative…
Acar, Burcin; Tarhan, Leman
The present study focused on investigating the effectiveness of instruction via newly developed teaching materials based on cooperative learning when compared to a traditional approach, on ninth grade students' understanding of metallic bonding. Fifty-seven ninth grade science students from two science classes in the same high school participated…
Sim, Joong Hiong; Daniel, Esther Gnanamalar Sarojini
Developing representational competence early in chemistry education is important. However, research to uncover students' difficulties with representational competence of basic chemical concepts in the early years of their chemistry course is scarce. The purpose of this study was to investigate and identify these difficulties. A total of 384…
Hyun Ju Park
The theory of conceptual change is criticized because it focuses only on supposed underlying logical structures and rational\\u000a process processes, and lacks attention to affective aspects as well as motivational constructs in students’ learning science.\\u000a This is a vast underestimation of the complexity and diversity of one’s change of conceptions. The notion of conceptual ecology\\u000a provides a context for understanding
Delaney, Mary E.
This study examined the relationships between body image importance (BII) andperfectionism and body satisfaction in a Canadian sample of undergraduate students. Specifically, perfectionism was conceptualized as a common cause of BII and body satisfaction. Furthermore, gender-schematic processing was examined as a moderator of sex differences in BII, which have been inconsistently found. As hypothesized, there was no significant partial correlation between BII and body satisfaction, controlling for perfectionism. Also, a significant Sex × Gender Schematicity interaction indicated that gender schematicity moderates sex differences in BII. Implications for understanding individual differences in, and elevated levels of BII are discussed. PMID:23421695
Lambert, Julie L.; Lindgren, Joan; Bleicher, Robert
Global climate change, referred to as climate change in this paper, has become an important planetary issue, and given that K-12 students have numerous alternative conceptions or lack of prior knowledge, it is critical that teachers have an understanding of the fundamental science underlying climate change. Teachers need to understand the natural…
Shamos, Michael I.
Yayon, Malka; Mamlok-Naaman, Rachel; Fortus, David
Chemical bonding knowledge is fundamental and essential to the understanding of almost every topic in chemistry, but it is very difficult to learn. While many studies have characterized some of the central elements of knowledge of this topic, these elements of knowledge have not been systematically organized. We describe the development and…
Tremel, Shirley Lynn
The purpose of this study was to gather information about how students learn the foundational concept of conservation of matter during a non-chemistry unit on the rock cycle. The unit covered the rock cycle, rock types, and the law of conservation of matter and took place in a sixth grade classroom of 30 students. A mixed methods, quasi-experimental, pre-post, delayed post design was used to measure student understanding of the concept of conservation of matter as it relates to the rock cycle. Students made significant learning gains from pre-test to post-test and showed mastery in less complex subject areas, but struggled to learn the more complex concept of conservation of matter. More research is needed in order to gain a greater understanding of how students learn difficult foundational concepts such as conservation of matter, and how they are able to apply their understanding across disciplines in science. This study offers suggestions for future work including a series of questions to assess student misconceptions about matter, and how to use those questions to measure students' ability to transfer knowledge to different learning contexts. The recommended questions ask students to transfer knowledge from the conservation of matter as it applies to the rock cycle to chemistry concepts including conservation of matter, mass and volume.
Strate, Joshua Matthew
The purpose of this study was to determine if middle school student scientific understanding could be predicted by the variables: standardized 5th grade score in science, standardized 5th grade score in mathematics, standardized 5th grade score in reading, student attitude towards science, socioeconomic status, gender, and ethnicity. The areas of the comprehensive literature review were trends in science learning and teaching, research in the K-12 science education arena, what factors have influenced K-12 science education, scientific understanding, what research has been done on K-12 scientific understanding, and what factors have influenced science understanding in the K-12 arenas. Based on the results of the literature review, the researcher of this study examined a sample of middle school 8th grade students. An Attitude Towards Science Survey (SATS) Simpson & Oliver (1990) and a Survey of Scientific Understandings (Klapper, DeLucia, & Trent, 1993) were administered to these 116 middle school 8th grade students drawn from a total population of 1109 who attend this middle school in a typical county in Florida during the 2010- 2011 school year. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to test each sub-hypothesis and to provide a model that attempted to predict student scientific understanding. Seven null sub-hypotheses were formed to determine if there were significant relationships between student scientific understanding and the abovementioned variables. The results of the tests of the seven null sub-hypotheses showed that the sub-hypothesis that involved socioeconomic status was rejected, which indicated that the socioeconomic status of a family does influence the level of scientific understanding of a student. Low SES students performed lower on the scientific understanding survey, on average, than high SES students. This study can be a source of information for teachers in low-income schools by recognizing potential areas of concern for low-income students in their science classrooms. The study is also a guide for administrators in developing science curriculum that is designed to remediate critical science content. Recommendations, further research, and implications for stakeholders in the science education process are then identified in order to focus on the concerns that these stakeholders need to address through a needs assessment.
Boo, Hong-Kwen; Watson, J. R.
Explores the development over time of students' understandings of the concept of chemical reaction in the context of two familiar reactions in solution. Based on interviews (n=48), results show that students made some progress in their understanding of the concept of chemical reaction but some fundamental misconceptions remained. (Author/MM)
Investigates the impact an undergraduate quantum chemistry course has on students' knowledge and understanding of atomic orbitals, molecular orbitals, and related concepts. Analysis reveals that students do not have a clear understanding of these concepts and confuse the various atomic orbital representations. Includes some suggestions and…
Czerniewicz, Laura; Williams, Kevin; Brown, Cheryl
Drawing on Archer's perspectives on the agency/structure relationship, this paper explains situations where students in varied, challenging circumstances find ways to negotiate difficult conditions. It reports on a 2007 study undertaken through a survey at three quite different universities in three South African provinces, addressing…
Fulop, Rebecca M.; Tanner, Kimberly D.
Students go to school to learn. How much, however, do students understand about the biological basis of this everyday process? Blackwell et al. (1) demonstrated a correlation between education about learning and academic achievement. Yet there are few studies investigating high school students' conceptions of learning. In this mixed-methods…
Grosslight, Lorraine; Unger, Christopher; Jay, Eileen; Smith, Carol L.
Thirty-three 7th-grade mixed-ability students and 22 11th-grade honors students were interviewed about their conceptions of models and their use in science. Three analyses are presented in order to: (1) portray the character of students' spontaneous answers; (2) examine the criteria students use to decide whether specific items are models or not; and (3) describe how different general levels of understanding models reflect different epistemological viewpoints. Four experts were also interviewed for purposes of comparison. We found that students in both groups have conceptions of models that are basically consistent with a naive realist epistemology. Thus, they are more likely to think of models as physical copies of reality that embody different spatiotemporal perspectives than as constructed representations that may embody different theoretical perspectives. As student ideas become more sophisticated, however, they increasingly include the fact that models are designed for particular purposes, especially to help communication. All of our experts expressed ideas consistent with a constructivist framework, drawing a distinction between abstract and physical models and articulating ways that models are used for the construction and testing of ideas. Our findings suggest that students need more experience using models as intellectual tools, more experience with models that provide contrasting conceptual views of phenomena, and more discussions of the roles of models in the service of scientific inquiry.
Cochrane, Donald Brian
The goal of scientific literacy requires that students develop an understanding of the nature of science to assist them in the reasoned acquisition of science concepts and in their future role as citizens in a participatory democracy. The purpose of this study was to investigate and describe the range of positions that grade six students hold with respect to the nature of science and to investigate whether gender or prior science education was related to students' views of the nature of science. Two grade six classes participated in this study. One class was from a school involved in a long-term elementary science curriculum project. The science curriculum at this school involved constructivist epistemology and pedagogy and a realist ontology. The curriculum stressed hands-on, open-ended activities and the development of science process skills. Students were frequently involved in creating and testing explanations for physical phenomena. The second class was from a matched school that had a traditional science program. Results of the study indicated that students hold a wider range of views of the nature of science than previously documented. Student positions ranged from having almost no understanding of the nature of science to those expressing positions regarding the nature of science that were more developed than previous studies had documented. Despite the range of views documented, all subjects held realist views of scientific knowledge. Contrary to the literature, some students were able to evaluate a scientific theory in light of empirical evidence that they had generated. Results also indicated that students from the project school displayed more advanced views of the nature of science than their matched peers. However, not all students benefited equally from their experiences. No gender differences were found with respect to students' understanding of the nature of science.
Martyn, Helen; Barrett, Anthony; Nicholson, Helen D
The concept of a soul has been discussed throughout religious, philosophical, and scientific circles, yet no definitive description exists. Recent interviews with medical students during the production of a documentary film identified that many believed in the concept of a soul. This study explores students' understanding of the concept of a soul. The 2011 cohort of second-year medical students at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand were invited to participate in an online survey with a free text response asking students to describe their understanding of the soul. The descriptions of the soul included the soul as a "spirit" or "life force" and some described the soul as giving a person their "values" and "personality." Students discussed the location of a soul with most stating that the soul was not attached to the body, but others mentioned the heart or the brain as the seat of the soul. A common theme related to the mortality of the soul emerged, with most believing that the soul left the body at death. Some students' concept of a soul was related to their religious beliefs, while others who did not believe in the concept of a soul described it as a "myth" used to bring comfort at the time of death. Medical students have varied opinions on the concept and importance of the soul. It is important to recognize the diversity of views when exploring the process of death and spirituality with medical students. PMID:23650081
Students may use the technical engineering terms without knowing what these words mean. This creates a language barrier in engineering that influences student learning. Previous research has been conducted to characterize the difference between colloquial and scientific language. Since this research had not yet been applied explicitly to…
?What do you think the National Science Education Standards are referring to when they talk about science and technology?" The authors posed this question to a group of undergraduate education majors during a science teaching methods course. The students? somewhat myopic notions of technology provided the perfect segue to introduce the activity, Paper Towers, which can be used in the middle school science classroom to help students develop their understandings of technological design.
Helping students understand how to learn is an important goal for all subjects and levels of education. While this goal is highly regarded, promoting it is extremely difficult. Many times, we as teachers are consumed with how to better help our students understand the content and forget to draw their attention to how they came to understand a particular phenomenon. This article provides a concrete experience that will help students better understand what causes the phases of the Moon seen from Earth, and also explains how we can help students develop their understanding of how to learn. Although it doesn't address all that is known about learning, it does provide some major implications for learning.
Grove, T. T.; Masters, M. F.
To help students develop an understanding of the proper use and function of spectrographs and monochromators we describe a student-assembled spectrograph using a "webcam" detector. The apparatus also works well as a low-cost demonstration, helping students make connections between an atomic spectrum observed by eye and a plot of the relative…
DeVore, Seth; Gauthier, Alexandre; Levy, Jeremy; Chandralekha, Singh
A lock-in amplifier is a versatile instrument frequently used in physics research. However, many students struggle with the basic operating principles of a lock-in amplifier which can lead to a variety of difficulties. To improve students' understanding, we have been developing and evaluating a research-based tutorial which makes use of a computer simulation of a lock-in amplifier. The tutorial is based on a field-tested approach in which students realize their difficulties after predicting the outcome of simulated experiments involving a lock-in amplifier and check their predictions using the simulated lock-in amplifier. Then, the tutorial guides and helps students develop a coherent understanding of the basics of a lock-in amplifier. The tutorial development involved interviews with physics faculty members and graduate students and iteration of many versions of the tutorial with professors and graduate students. The student difficulties and the development and assessment of the research-based tutorial are discussed. We thank National Science Foundation for award NSF-1124131.
Solomonidou, Christina; Stavridou, Heleni
Follows 168 Greek students ages 13-14 involved in a new sociocultural situation--a specially-designed introductory chemistry sequence. Results show that conceptual development occurred during the sequence. (Author/CCM)
Booth, Rachelle; Hernandez, Magaly; Baker, Erica L.; Grajales, Tevni; Pribis, Peter
College students are one of the most at-risk population groups for food poisoning, due to risky food safety behaviors. Using the Likert Scale, undergraduate students were asked to participate in a Food Safety Survey which was completed by 499 students ages 18–25. Data was analyzed using SPSS and AMOS statistical software. Four conceptual definitions regarding food safety were defined as: general food safety, bacterial food safety, produce food safety, and politics associated with food safety. Knowledge seems to be an important factor in shaping students attitudes regarding general and bacterial safety. Ethnicity plays a role in how people view the politics of food safety, and the safety of organic foods. PMID:23364131
Chagas, Maristela Inęs Osawa; Ximenes, Lorena Barbosa; Jorge, Maria Salete Bessa
Article produced from the a doctoral thesis: "The Education in Health in the scenarios of teach-learning: representations of professors and students from the Nursing School of the University Vale of the Acaraú", whose objective was to apprehend the direction of the representations elaborated for professors and students of the Graduation Nursing Course, about Education in Health. The results presented here come from the Free Test of Words Association. It was possible to infer that the novice students' representations are in the nucleus of what is established as common sense, considering the reductionism concept in health, proper form of the biomedical model. The veterans students evidence a positive concept of health, what points toward a conceptual change, influenced by the theoretician-practical experiences during the graduation. PMID:18472536
Fowler, Samantha R.
The purpose of this study was to explore the evolution science content used during college students' negotiation of biology-based socioscientific issues (SSI) and examine how it related to students' conceptual understanding and acceptance of biological evolution. Specific research questions were, (1a) what specific evolutionary science content do college students evoke during SSI negotiation, (1b) what is the depth of the evolutionary science content reflected in college students. SSI negotiation, and (2) what is the nature of the interaction between evolution understanding and evolution acceptance as they relate to depth of use of evolution content during SSI negotiation? The Socioscientific Issues Questionnaire (SSI-Q) was developed using inductive data analysis to examine science content use and to develop a rubric for measuring depth of evolutionary science content use during SSI negotiation. Sixty upper level undergraduate biology and non-biology majors completed the SSI-Q and also the Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS: Anderson, Fisher, & Norman, 2002) to measure evolution understanding and the Measure of Acceptance of the Theory of Evolution (MATE: Rutledge & Warden, 1999) to measure evolution acceptance. A multiple regression analysis tested for interaction effects between the predictor variables, evolution understanding and evolution acceptance. Results indicate that college students primarily use science concepts related to evolution to negotiate biology-based SSI: variation in a population, inheritance of traits, differential success, and change through time. The hypothesis that the extent of one's acceptance of evolution is a mitigating factor in how evolution content is evoked during SSI negotiation was supported by the data. This was seen in that evolution was the predominant science content used by participants for each of the three SSI scenarios used in this study and used consistently throughout the three SSI scenarios. In addition to its potential to assess aspects of argumentation, a modification of the SSI-Q could be used for further study about students' misconceptions about evolution or scientific literacy, if it is defined as one's tendency to utilize science content during a decision-making process within an SSI context.
Chambers, Joan M.; Carbonaro, Mike; Murray, Hana
Science educators advocate hands on experiences and the use of manipulatives as important for children's conceptual development. Consequently, the utilisation of "Lego" robotic technologies in teaching and learning has become more prevalent in school science classrooms. It is important to investigate their value as educational tools, particularly…
Mark Rapport; Kyong-Mee Chung; Gail Shore; Patti Isaacs
Highlights the desirability of using a theoretical framework for guiding the design and evaluation of therapeutic interventions for children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). A general conceptual model is introduced and used to evaluate ADHD treatment outcome research. Treatments designed to target the substrate level (pharmacological interventions) result in broad, robust improvement in both core and peripheral areas of
Niebert, Kai; Gropengiesser, Harald
In recent years, researchers have become aware of the experiential grounding of scientific thought. Accordingly, research has shown that metaphorical mappings between experience-based source domains and abstract target domains are omnipresent in everyday and scientific language. The theory of conceptual metaphor explains these findings based on…
Henson, Robin K.
Although often ignored, reliability is critical when interpreting study effects and test results. Accordingly, this article focuses on the most commonly used estimate of reliability, internal consistency coefficients, with emphasis on coefficient alpha. An interpretive framework is provided for applied researchers and others seeking a conceptual…
Vaiyavutjamai, Pongchawee; Clements, M. A. (Ken)
Two hundred and thirty-one students in six Grade 9 classes in two government secondary schools located near Chiang Mai, Thailand, attempted to solve the same 18 quadratic equations before and after participating in 11 lessons on quadratic equations. Data from the students' written responses to the equations, together with data in the form of transcripts of 36 interviews with 18 interviewees (a high performer, a medium performer, and a low performer from each of the six classes), were analysed. Using a rubric for assessing students' understanding, the analysis revealed that at the post-teaching stage students improved their performance on quadratic equations and had a better understanding of associated concepts than they had at the pre-teaching stage. However, many were still confused about the concepts of a variable and of a "solution" to a quadratic equation. After the lessons, most students had acquired neither an instrumental nor a relational understanding of the mathematics associated with solving elementary quadratic equations.
Schmidt, Hans-Jurgen; Kaufmann, Birgit; Treagust, David F.
In introductory chemistry courses students are presented with the model that matter is composed of particles, and that weak forces of attraction exist between them. This model is used to interpret phenomena such as solubility and melting points, and aids in understanding the changes in states of matter as opposed to chemical reactions. We…
This study sought to provide an explanation of (n=13) university students' understanding of the concept of linear inequality as presented in a problem-solving setting. In the course of the analysis of the data, the transition from arithmetic to algebra emerged as a critical issue. Therefore, the study examines the differences in the…
Petray, Clayre; And Others
Provides physical educators with an understanding of diabetes, noting important considerations when teaching physical education to students with diabetes. Discusses four aspects of the issue (overview; common questions and answers concerning the control of diabetes; balancing insulin, food intake, and physical activity; and implications for…
Linenberger, Kimberly J.; Bretz, Stacey Lowery
Digital pen-and-paper technology, although marketed commercially as a bridge between old and new note-taking capabilities, synchronizes the collection of both written and audio data. This manuscript describes how this technology was used to improve data collection in research regarding students' learning, specifically their understanding of…
Nancy J. Becker
This paper describes a study of undergraduate student search behaviour, examines the results through the lens of various disciplines, and provides new insights that will increase our understanding and facilitate the development of more effective instructional programmes. Perspectives and research results drawn from multiple disciplines are used to explore the role of mental models, reference groups and habits, and intellectual
Ravit Golan Duncan; Brian J. Reiser
In this article we apply a novel analytical framework to explore students' difficulties in understanding molecular genetics—a domain that is particularly challenging to learn. Our analytical framework posits that reasoning in molecular genetics entails mapping across ontologically distinct levels—an information level containing the genetic information, and a physical level containing hierarchically organized biophysical entities such as proteins, cells, tissues, etc.
Roberts, Scott L.
The question "what if?" has been asked by historians for generations. This article explains how history teachers can use students' own what-if questions to enhance their historical knowledge and understanding by offering educators a step-by-step plan for utilizing counterfactual history into their classrooms. Additionally, the author offers a…
Menil, Violeta C.
In this paper the author discusses the meaning of sampling, the reasons for sampling, the Central Limit Theorem, and the different techniques of sampling. Practical and relevant examples are given to make the appropriate sampling techniques understandable to students of Introductory Statistics courses. With a thorough knowledge of sampling…
Tessellation is included in many mathematics curricula as one way of developing spatial ideas. If students do not understand tessellation in the intended ways, however, the development of other spatial ideas, such as properties of shapes and symmetry, may be compromised. Van Hiele levels were used as a basis for analysing the descriptions of eight…
Baturo, Annette R
This paper provides a glimpse into the positive effect on student learning as a result of empowering a classroom teacher of 20 years (Andrea) with subject matter knowledge relevant to developing fraction understanding. Having a facility with fractions is essential for life skills in any society, whether metricated or non-metricated, and yet…
Strauss, Sidney; And Others
University students' understanding of the laws of matter conservation, weight conservation, gravity and the functioning of levers were examined before, during, and after a traditional weight conservation task in which a surreptitious deception caused the pan balance scale not to balance. (Author/JMB)
Covitt, Beth A.; Gunckel, Kristin L.; Anderson, Charles W.
The authors developed a framework of empirically grounded curricular goals for water-science literacy and documented the challenges that students face in achieving these goals. Water-related environmental science literacy requires an understanding of connected natural and human-engineered systems at multiple scales ranging from atomic-molecular…
Sutton, Anna; Taylor, David; Johnston, Carol
A clear understanding of how students view plagiarism is needed if the extensive efforts devoted to helping them engage in high-quality scholarship are to be worthwhile. There are a variety of views on this topic, but theoretical models to integrate the literature, take account of international differences and guide practitioners are limited.…
Lombardi, Kara M.
The purpose of this study was to examine the anticipatory socialization experiences of new student affairs professionals. The focus was to gain a deeper understanding of how new professionals experience their anticipatory socialization, specifically the job search and pre-entry communication with their new organizations. The theory that emerged…
Ian M. Kinchin
This paper advocates the application of established teaching models to the professional development of biology teachers. This is achieved by using the analogy of conceptual ecologies, made explicit through concept mapping. The approach is designed to support teachers' developing understanding of pupils' conceptual change by using familiar terminology and biological analogies. Monitoring of students' understanding at an ecosystemic level may
The paper describes an effort to enhance student understanding of the mechanical engineering profession. A freshman course Introduction to Mechanical Engineering has been developed with the objective to address such topics as the necessity of good communication skills; professional ethics; the importance of innovation, critical thinking, team work, diversity, and life-long learning. The effectiveness of addressing these issues in a freshman course in comparison with the traditional approach to teaching an introductory mechanical engineering course has been assessed through a study involving student surveys administered in control and pilot class sections at the beginning and at the end of the course. The results of the study demonstrate that the pilot group of students exposed to novel course materials acquired enhanced understanding of the subjects identified by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) as professional skills.
Rector, T. A.; Pilachowski, C. A.; Young, M. J.
Research-Based Science Education is a method of instruction that models the processes of scientific inquiry and exploration used by scientists to discover new knowledge. It is "research-based" in the sense that students work together in self-guided, cooperative groups on a real research project. In other words, in order to learn science, students are given the opportunity to actually do science. Here we present the results of a study of undergraduate students that were given the opportunity to work on a research project underway to search for novae in Local Group galaxies. Students analyzed images obtained regularly from the WIYN 0.9-meter telescope on Kitt Peak. Novae were found by blinking these images. Aperture photometry was used to generate light curves and measure decay rates. Students then explored individually chosen questions, such as comparing the location of novae in the galaxy and their rates of decay. Students then wrote research papers and gave oral presentations to the class. To assess their development in the understanding of science as a process, students completed pre and post concept maps on the topic of "scientific research." Each map was assessed for an understanding of the following ten concepts. Scientific research is: a process (i.e., a series of many steps over time); based upon prior knowledge or previous research; based on a hypothesis/question; uses experimentation; data collection; data representation (e.g., charts, tables and graphs); requires equipment; analysis/interpretation; generates results/ conclusions; and results that link back to modify the initial hypothesis iteratively. Overall, students made significant gains on the concept maps, showing greater depth in the number of concepts and their relationships. On average, students increased the number of the ten understood concepts listed above from 2.8 before the class to 5.4 afterwards.
Rector, T. A.; Pilachowski, C.; Young, M. J.
Research-Based Science Education is a method of instruction that models the processes of scientific inquiry and exploration used by scientists to discover new knowledge. It is "research-based" in the sense that students work together in self-guided, cooperative groups on a real research project. In other words, in order to learn science, students are given the opportunity to actually do science. Here we present the results of a study of undergraduate students that were given the opportunity to work on a research project underway to search for novae in Local Group galaxies. Students analyzed images obtained regularly from the WIYN 0.9-meter telescope on Kitt Peak. Novae were found by blinking these images. Aperture photometry was used to generate light curves and measure decay rates. Students then explored individually chosen questions, such as comparing the location of novae in the galaxy and their rates of decay. Students then wrote research papers and gave oral presentations to the class. To assess their development in the understanding of science as a process, students completed pre and post concept maps on the topic of "scientific research." Each map was assessed for an understanding of the following ten concepts. Scientific research is: a process (i.e., a series of many steps over time), based upon prior knowledge or previous research, based on a hypothesis/question, uses experimentation, data collection, data representation (e.g., charts, tables and graphs), requires equipment, analysis/interpretation, generates results/conclusions, and results link back to modify the initial hypothesis iteratively. Overall, students made significant gains on the concept maps, showing greater depth in the number of concepts and their relationships. On average, students increased the number of the ten understood concepts listed above from 2.8 before the class to 5.4 afterwards.
Nieminen, Pasi; Savinainen, Antti; Viiri, Jouni
Previous physics education research has raised the question of "hidden variables" behind students' success in learning certain concepts. In the context of the force concept, it has been suggested that students' reasoning ability is one such variable. Strong positive correlations between students' preinstruction scores for reasoning ability…
Kim, Minkee; Song, Jinwoong
The literature on students' attitudinal constructs in science education asserts that students hold dichotomous attitudes toward science (AS). For instance, studies from the Relevance of Science Education project reveal that students possess negative attitudes in terms of their favourableness toward school science, preference toward scientific…
Al-Jaroudi, Mo H.
This causal-comparative descriptive study investigated the achievement of pre-service elementary teachers taking an introductory physical science course that integrates inquiry-based instruction with computer simulations. The study was intended to explore if pre-service elementary teachers with different attitudes towards science as well as students with different learning styles would benefit differentially. Four research questions including four hypotheses were developed. The first major question consist of four specific hypothesis that addressed preservice elementary teachers' learning styles (Active/Reflective, Sensing/Intuitive, Visual/Verbal, and Sequential/Global) and their conceptual understanding of chemistry and the particulate nature of matter in a science class which use hands-on learning integrated with computer based simulated activities. The second major question pertained to the relationship between preservice teachers learning science and chemistry and their attitude towards science. The third major question related to preservice elementary teachers science and chemistry achievement gain scores and attitude average affected by their learning styles. Finally, the fourth question pertained to the dissipation or the minimization of preservice elementary teachers' science and chemistry misconceptions over the course of study. Three instruments were given to preservice elementary teachers in three different classes: pretest/posttest for the science conceptual understanding examination, and pretest-only for the science attitude and learning styles instruments. Total usable science attitude surveys returned was 67 out of 70. The overall average mean was 3.13 (SD = .51) on a five point scale. Total return of science achievement instrument was 65, with a total mean test score (quantitative and qualitative together) of 6.38 (SD = 3.05) on the pretest, with a post test mean of 9.06 (SD = 4.19). Results revealed no statistically significant achievement gain scores based on students' learning styles, entering in all 4-combined dimensions at the same time Visual/Verbal, Sensing/Intuitive, Sequential/Global, and Active/Reflective (p > .05), indicating the four learning styles dimensions cannot be used to predict students' achievement gain. Results also indicated that there was no significant relationship between achievement gain and students' attitude (p > .05). Attitude and learning style together were also not significantly related to achievement gain. Preservice elementary teachers' comprehension of chemical concepts in this study varied from no comprehension to fair comprehension, and included many misconceptions; no answer showed complete understanding of the concepts. Many of the preservice teachers held misconception related to evaporation. If not addressed in science content and methods courses, this could be a problem as this new generation of teachers goes out to teach. It is proposed that to fix preservice elementary teachers' conceptual problems, curriculum needs to specifically focus on misconceptions. The preservice elementary subjects of the study showed a variety of misconceptions on both pretest and posttest concerning the particulate and the kinetic nature of matter. Suggestions are made is that a science content course could more contribute to preservice students' conceptual change if curriculum designers incorporate a segment that specifically addresses misconceptions, especially those misconceptions that have been documented in the literature for decades. A robust cognitive model for science education is proposed to increase teachers' science knowledge and to decrease science misconceptions.
PhD Joel A. Michael (Rush Medical College Department of Molecular Biophysics and Physiology)
The explosion of knowledge in all of the biological sciences, and specifically in physiology, has created a growing problem for educators. There is more to know than students can possibly learn. Thus, difficult choices have to be made about what we expect students to master. One approach to making the needed decisions is to consider those "core principles" that provide the thinking tools for understanding all biological phenomena. We identified a list of "core principles" that appear to apply to all aspects of physiology and unpacked them into their constituent component ideas. While such a list does not define the content for a physiology course, it does provide a guideline for selecting the topics on which to focus student attention. This list of "core principles" also offers a starting point for developing an assessment instrument to be used in determining if students have mastered the important unifying ideas of physiology.
Garzón, Isabel; De Cock, Mieke; Zuza, Kristina; van Kampen, Paul; Guisasola, Jenaro
The goal of this study is to identify students' difficulties with learning the concepts of electromotive force (emf) and potential difference in the context of transitory currents and resistive direct-current circuits. To investigate these difficulties, we developed a questionnaire based on an analysis of the theoretical and epistemological framework of physics, which was then administered to first-year engineering and physics students at universities in Spain, Colombia, and Belgium. The results of the study show that student difficulties seem to be strongly linked to the absence of an analysis of the energy balance within the circuit and that most university students do not clearly understand the usefulness of and the difference between the concepts of potential difference and emf.
This study seeks to explore and describe the role of cognitive, metacognitive, and motivational variables in conceptual change. More specifically, the purposes of the study were (1) to investigate the predictive ability of a learning model that was developed based on the intentional conceptual change perspective in predicting change in conceptual…
important contemporary theories and paradigms "governing" thinking on learningResearch Seminars on learning: How to Understand and Explain Learning understanding of learning and cognitive change. One tradition influential today
Lane, Cleveland O., Jr.
tested using path analysis. The study found that while prior knowledge was a strong predictor for conceptual understanding, it was not as effective for observing the inquiry task performance. But, the Motivation towards Computers and their Inquiry Task...
Aydeniz, Mehmet; Baksa, Kristen; Skinner, Jane
The purpose of this study was to understand the impact of an apprenticeship program on high school students' understanding of the nature of scientific inquiry. Data related to seventeen students' understanding of science and scientific inquiry were collected through open-ended questionnaires. Findings suggest that although engagement in authentic…
Jozkowski, Kristen N; Peterson, Zoë D; Sanders, Stephanie A; Dennis, Barbara; Reece, Michael
Because sexual assault is often defined in terms of nonconsent, many prevention efforts focus on promoting the clear communication of consent as a mechanism to reduce assault. Yet little research has specifically examined how sexual consent is being conceptualized by heterosexual college students. In this study, 185 Midwestern U.S. college students provided responses to open-ended questions addressing how they define, communicate, and interpret sexual consent and nonconsent. The study aimed to assess how college students define and communicate consent, with particular attention to gender differences in consent. Results indicated no gender differences in defining consent. However, there were significant differences in how men and women indicated their own consent and nonconsent, with women reporting more verbal strategies than men and men reporting more nonverbal strategies than women, and in how they interpreted their partner's consent and nonconsent, with men relying more on nonverbal indicators of consent than women. Such gender differences may help to explain some misunderstandings or misinterpretations of consent or agreement to engage in sexual activity, which could partially contribute to the occurrence of acquaintance rape; thus, a better understanding of consent has important implications for developing sexual assault prevention initiatives. PMID:23919322
Urey, Mustafa; Calik, Muammer
Since students' misconceptions are not completely remedied by means of only one conceptual change method, the authors assume that using different conceptual methods embedded within the 5E model will not only be more effective in enhancing students' conceptual understanding, but also may eliminate all students' misconceptions. The aim of this study…
Palinkas, Lawrence A
This paper introduces a conceptual framework for understanding and responding to the currently unfolding social and psychological impacts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Drawing from the concept of corrosive communities and its relationship to theories of conservation of resources, cognitive activation, and risk and resilience, the conceptual model identifies three levels or tiers of impacts: biopsychosocial impacts that are direct consequences of the contamination of the physical environment; interpersonal impacts that are direct consequences of the biopsychosocial impacts; and intrapersonal or psychological impacts that are consequences of both the biopsychosocial and the interpersonal impacts. The model is then evaluated in light of research conducted in the aftermath of the Exxon Valdez oil spill as well as studies of other manmade disasters, and offers a set of testable hypotheses that predict likely impacts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The conceptual framework may be used to identify strategies to develop community resilience and target specific services to prevent and mitigate these adverse effects. PMID:22913496
Kliche, T; Kröger, G
Empowerment is an important concept in health care, but despite its prevalence it seems to be more of a buzz word. Thus, a conceptual review on empowerment in prevention and health promotion was carried out. 62 German and international theoretical contributions, reviews and studies were incorporated, covering the fields of prevention, care and therapy, rehabilitation, health-care research, nursing and work-related stress. The analysis revealed eight main dimensions of empowerment: (1) shared decision-making, (2) self-efficacy, (3) social support and social capital, (4) skills and competences, (5) health care utilisation, (6) goal setting and attainment, (7) reflexive thought and (8) innovation. Their empirical assessment can be carried out on a micro-, meso-, or macro-level. Three distinct basic conceptual notions emerged from the analysis, each applying its own specific research questions and measurement instruments: clinical, organizational-professional and political understanding of "empowerment". Therefore, these three specific conceptual notions should each be developed and tested separately, in particular in reviews, and empirical studies should embrace all eight subdimensions. PMID:19085666
McNeal, K. S.; Libarkin, J.; Ledley, T. S.; Guthrie, C.
Most students have difficulty articulating processes that are key for Earth’s changes and may have limited ability to understand Earth system science and think across spatial and temporal dimensions. The cryosphere, a complex and dynamic Earth system that exhibits change over time (e.g., seasonal, yearly, decadal, and millennial), can be difficult for students to reason about. The presented research assesses the effectiveness of the project developed on-line modules on high school students’ cryosphere content knowledge and skill development, including their: (1) conceptual understanding of ice, thermodynamics, climate, changes in ice cover over time, Earth system interactions, and complexity, and (2) use and interpretation of data and graphs about the cryosphere. Pre- and post- student assessments, classroom observations, and teacher interviews were collected from four high school classrooms in Texas to determine the effectiveness of the Earthlabs cryosphere modules in reaching the specified learning goals. Preliminary analysis of pre-and post-test data revealed a number of interesting changes where students displayed an increase in their awareness of the cryosphere, increase in confidence about cryosphere knowledge, and an increase in their ability to read and interpret graphs. Furthermore, classroom observations made for 25 minutes during a class period illustrated that for over 84% of the class period the students were engaged with the Earthlabs materials and spent the majority (>50%) of their time either discussing (31%) or working on the on-line Earthlabs cryosphere materials (29%). Finally, forty-five minute individual telephone interviews conducted with the four implementing cryosphere teachers revealed that teachers overwhelmingly reflected that the materials supported students’ ability to learn about the (i) nature and importance of the cryosphere, (ii) manipulation, analysis, interpretation of data, (iii) physical changes over multiple time scales, and (iv) the dynamic interactions among earth systems. However, it was noted that students tended to have more difficulty over longer time scale (e.g., decadal and millennial) and that they often did not see the relevance of the cryosphere to their own lives. Many teachers were not able to implement the full two week cryosphere modules in their classroom due to time constraints. We are currently investigating how this impacted student ability to reason about cryosphere temporal dynamics, specifically over the longer time frames. The results from this research are promising and illustrate that during the implementation students are highly engaged in the Earthlabs cryosphere materials. Post-implementation, students also have altered conceptions about the cryosphere and appropriately use evidence based reasoning skills.
Conceptual Change and Science Achievement Related to a Lesson Sequence on Acids and Bases among African American Alternative High School Students: A Teacher's Practical Arguments and the Voice of the "Other"
Wood, Lynda Charese
The study of teaching and learning during the period of translating ideals of reform into classroom practice enables us to understand student-teacher-researcher symbiotic learning. In line with this assumption, the purpose of this study is threefold:(1) observe effects of the "Common Knowledge Construction Model" (CKCM), a conceptual…
Since instructors have started recognizing the potential of Web 2.0 integration in web-based courses, blogs have been used to provide students with means of virtual communication, contribution, collaboration and community building. In this paper we aim to take another step forward by presenting and analyzing the integration of student blogs in an undergraduate computer science course on software architecture and web technologies: we implemented an LMS extension that acted as a course blog portal by collecting and displaying feeds of externally hosted blogs and logging usage data. Data analysis reveals that students who perform better academically also tend to participate more actively in the course blogosphere. Subsequently, we propose a blogging activity model, which aims to reveal and explain relationships between blogging activity variables—including peer visits, commenting and posting—to achieve a better understanding of lively blog communities in courses.
Duncan, Ravit Golan; Freidenreich, Hava Bresler; Chinn, Clark A.; Bausch, Andrew
Genetics is the cornerstone of modern biology and understanding genetics is a critical aspect of scientific literacy. Research has shown, however, that many high school graduates lack fundamental understandings in genetics necessary to make informed decisions or to participate in public debates over emerging technologies in molecular genetics. Currently, much of genetics instruction occurs at the high school level. However, recent policy reports suggest that we may need to begin introducing aspects of core concepts in earlier grades and to successively develop students' understandings of these concepts in subsequent grades. Given the paucity of research about genetics learning at the middle school level, we know very little about what students in earlier grades are capable of reasoning about in this domain. In this paper, we discuss a research study aimed at fostering deeper understandings of molecular genetics at the middle school level. As part of the research we designed a two-week model-based inquiry unit implemented in two 7th grade classrooms ( N = 135). We describe our instructional design and report results based on analysis of pre/post assessments and written artifacts of the unit. Our findings suggest that middle school students can develop: (a) a view of genes as productive instructions for proteins, (b) an understanding of the role of proteins in mediating genetic effects, and (c) can use this knowledge to reason about a novel genetic phenomena. However, there were significant differences in the learning gains in both classrooms and we provide speculative explanations of what may have caused these differences.
Of primary concern is the ability of students high school age to be able to conceptualize what actually goes on in electronic circuitry in order for them to be able to build and troubleshoot with precision skill. The Fault Assisted Circuit Electronic Trainer (FACET) was used on three students to determine if this electronic computer-aided…
Ishimoto, Michi; Thornton, Ronald K.; Sokoloff, David R.
This study assesses the Japanese translation of the Force and Motion Conceptual Evaluation (FMCE). Researchers are often interested in comparing the conceptual ideas of students with different cultural backgrounds. The FMCE has been useful in identifying the concepts of English-speaking students from different backgrounds. To identify effectively the conceptual ideas of Japanese students and to compare them to those of their English-speaking counterparts, more work is required. Because of differences between the Japanese and English languages, and between the Japanese and American educational systems, it is important to assess the Japanese translation of the FMCE, a conceptual evaluation originally developed in English for American students. To assess its appropriateness, we examined the performance of a large sample of students on the translated version of the FMCE and then compared the results to those of English-speaking students. The data comprise the pretest results of 1095 students, most of whom were first-year students at a midlevel engineering school between 2003 and 2012. Basic statistics and the classical test theory indices of the translated FMCE indicate that its reliability and discrimination are appropriate to assess Japanese students' concepts about force and motion. In general, the preconcepts of Japanese students assessed with the Japanese translation of the FMCE are quite similar to those of American students assessed with the FMCE, thereby supporting the validity of the translated version. However, our findings do show (1) that only a small percentage of Japanese students grasped Newtonian concepts and (2) that the percentage of Japanese students who used two different concept models together to answer some questions seems to be higher than that of American students.
Gilmore, Camilla K.; Papadatou-Pastou, Marietta
Some theories from cognitive psychology and mathematics education suggest that children's understanding of mathematical concepts develops together with their knowledge of mathematical procedures. However, previous research into children's understanding of the inverse relationship between addition and subtraction suggests that there are individual…
Westbrook, Susan L.; Marek, Edmund A.
Examines seventh grade life science students, tenth grade biology students, and college zoology students for understanding of the concept of diffusion. Describes the differences among the grade levels in sound or partial understanding, misconceptions, and no understanding. Discusses the effect of developmental level on understanding. (KR)
Yen, Hung-Chih; Tuan, Hsiao-Lin; Liao, Chi-Hung
The purposes of this study were to investigate students' conceptual learning outcomes and the effect of motivation on students' conceptual learning outcomes in two different contexts: a Web-based and a classroom-based instruction, which incorporated the Dual Situation Learning Model (DSLM). Nine classes of Grade eight students (N = 190) were…
Chiou, Rocco; Rich, Anina N
Synesthesia is a phenomenon in which stimulation in one sensory modality triggers involuntary experiences typically not associated with that stimulation. Inducing stimuli (inducers) and synesthetic experiences (concurrents) may occur within the same modality (e.g., seeing colors while reading achromatic text) or span across different modalities (e.g., tasting flavors while listening to music). Although there has been considerable progress over the last decade in understanding the cognitive and neural mechanisms of synesthesia, the focus of current neurocognitive models of synesthesia does not encompass many crucial psychophysical characteristics documented in behavioral research. Prominent theories of the neurophysiological basis of synesthesia construe it as a perceptual phenomenon and hence focus primarily on the modality-specific brain regions for perception. Many behavioral studies, however, suggest an essential role for conceptual-level information in synesthesia. For example, there is evidence that synesthetic experience arises subsequent to identification of an inducing stimulus, differs substantially from real perceptual events, can be akin to perceptual memory, and is susceptible to lexical/semantic contexts. These data suggest that neural mechanisms lying beyond the realm of the perceptual cortex (especially the visual system), such as regions subserving conceptual knowledge, may play pivotal roles in the neural architecture of synesthesia. Here we discuss the significance of non-perceptual mechanisms that call for a re-evaluation of the emphasis on synesthesia as a perceptual phenomenon. We also review recent studies which hint that some aspects of synesthesia resemble our general conceptual knowledge for object attributes, at both psychophysical and neural levels. We then present a conceptual-mediation model of synesthesia in which the inducer and concurrent are linked within a conceptual-level representation. This "inducer-to-concurrent" nexus is maintained within a supramodal "hub," while the subjective (bodily) experience of its resultant concurrent (e.g., a color) may then require activation of "spokes" in the perception-related cortices. This hypothesized "hub-and-spoke" structure would engage a distributed network of cortical regions and may account for the full breadth of this intriguing phenomenon. PMID:24653707
Synesthesia is a phenomenon in which stimulation in one sensory modality triggers involuntary experiences typically not associated with that stimulation. Inducing stimuli (inducers) and synesthetic experiences (concurrents) may occur within the same modality (e.g., seeing colors while reading achromatic text) or span across different modalities (e.g., tasting flavors while listening to music). Although there has been considerable progress over the last decade in understanding the cognitive and neural mechanisms of synesthesia, the focus of current neurocognitive models of synesthesia does not encompass many crucial psychophysical characteristics documented in behavioral research. Prominent theories of the neurophysiological basis of synesthesia construe it as a perceptual phenomenon and hence focus primarily on the modality-specific brain regions for perception. Many behavioral studies, however, suggest an essential role for conceptual-level information in synesthesia. For example, there is evidence that synesthetic experience arises subsequent to identification of an inducing stimulus, differs substantially from real perceptual events, can be akin to perceptual memory, and is susceptible to lexical/semantic contexts. These data suggest that neural mechanisms lying beyond the realm of the perceptual cortex (especially the visual system), such as regions subserving conceptual knowledge, may play pivotal roles in the neural architecture of synesthesia. Here we discuss the significance of non-perceptual mechanisms that call for a re-evaluation of the emphasis on synesthesia as a perceptual phenomenon. We also review recent studies which hint that some aspects of synesthesia resemble our general conceptual knowledge for object attributes, at both psychophysical and neural levels. We then present a conceptual-mediation model of synesthesia in which the inducer and concurrent are linked within a conceptual-level representation. This “inducer-to-concurrent” nexus is maintained within a supramodal “hub,” while the subjective (bodily) experience of its resultant concurrent (e.g., a color) may then require activation of “spokes” in the perception-related cortices. This hypothesized “hub-and-spoke” structure would engage a distributed network of cortical regions and may account for the full breadth of this intriguing phenomenon. PMID:24653707
This article focuses on traditional vocabulary instruction that has often had pernicious side effects: drill and kill that turned kids off to reading and word study. This trend can be reversed through careful attention to the needs and predilections of students as well as conspicuous consideration of the ramifications of time-cost. Here, the…
There is limited research available in the area of science education for deaf children. In the twenty-first century, the importance of science and specifically scientific argumentation cannot be overlooked as a vital aspect of the curriculum. Current science teaching presents a range of difficulties for deaf students particularly when abstract…
The purpose of this design-based experiment is two-fold: to see if classroom pedagogies can be developed to improve student achievement in English literature as well as prepare them for 21st Century literacies. Applying Bereiter and Scardamalia's theory of Knowledge Building to English curricula, this experiment tracked the progress of a…
Wilhelm, Jennifer Anne
This case study examined what student content understanding could occur in an inner city Industrial Electronics classroom located at Tree High School where project-based instruction, enhanced with technology, was implemented for the first time. Students participated in a project implementation unit involving sound waves and trigonometric reasoning. The unit was designed to foster common content learning (via benchmark lessons) by all students in the class, and to help students gain a deeper conceptual understanding of a sub-set of the larger content unit (via group project research). The objective goal of the implementation design unit was to have students gain conceptual understanding of sound waves, such as what actually waves in a wave, how waves interfere with one another, and what affects the speed of a wave. This design unit also intended for students to develop trigonometric reasoning associated with sinusoidal curves and superposition of sinusoidal waves. Project criteria within this design included implementation features, such as the need for the student to have a driving research question and focus, the need for benchmark lessons to help foster and scaffold content knowledge and understanding, and the need for project milestones to complete throughout the implementation unit to allow students the time for feedback and revision. The Industrial Electronics class at Tree High School consisted of nine students who met daily during double class periods giving 100 minutes of class time per day. The class teacher had been teaching for 18 years (mathematics, physics, and computer science). He had a background in engineering and experience teaching at the college level. Benchmark activities during implementation were used to scaffold fundamental ideas and terminology needed to investigate characteristics of sound and waves. Students participating in benchmark activities analyzed motion and musical waveforms using probeware, and explored wave phenomena using waves simulation software. Benchmark activities were also used to bridge the ideas of triangle trigonometric ratios to the graphs of sinusoidal curves, which could lead to understanding the concepts of frequency, period, amplitude, and wavelength. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)
Touqan, Abdul Razzaq [Assistant Professor, Civil Engineering Department-An-Najah National University, Nablus-Palestine (Country Unknown)
Present methods of analysis and mathematical modeling contain so many assumptions that separate them from reality and thus represent a defect in design which makes it difficult to analyze reasons of failure. Three dimensional (3D) modeling is so superior to 1D or 2D modeling, static analysis deviates from the true nature of earthquake load which is 'a dynamic punch', and conflicting assumptions exist between structural engineers (who assume flexible structures on rigid block foundations) and geotechnical engineers (who assume flexible foundations supporting rigid structures). Thus a 3D dynamic soil-structure interaction is a step that removes many of the assumptions and thus clears reality to a greater extent. However such a model cannot be analytically analyzed. We need to anatomize and analogize it. The paper will represent a conceptual (analogical) 1D model for soil structure interaction and clarifies it by comparing its outcome with 3D dynamic soil-structure finite element analysis of two structures. The aim is to focus on how to calculate the period of the structure and to investigate effect of variation of stiffness on soil-structure interaction.
Hingle, Melanie; Chuang, Ru-Jye; Gorely, Trish; Hinkley, Trina; Jago, Russell; Lanigan, Jane; Pearson, Natalie; Thompson, Darcy A.
Abstract Screen media (television, computers, and videogames) use has been linked to multiple child outcomes, including obesity. Parents can be an important influence on children's screen use. There has been an increase in the number of instruments available to assess parenting in feeding and physical activity contexts, however few measures are available to assess parenting practices regarding children's screen media use. A working group of screen media and parenting researchers convened at the preconference workshop to the 2012 International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity (ISBNPA) annual meeting, “Parenting Measurement: Current Status and Consensus Reports,” to identify and prioritize issues in assessing screen media parenting practices. The group identified that screen media use can pose different risks for children, depending on their age and developmental stage, across physiologic, psychosocial, and development outcomes. With that in mind, a conceptual framework of how parents may influence their child's screen-viewing behaviors was proposed to include the screen media content, context of viewing, and amount viewed. A research agenda was proposed to prioritize a validation of the framework and enhance the ability of researchers to best assess parenting influences across the three domains of content, context and amount of children's screen media use. PMID:23944919
Zacharia, Zacharias Charilaos
This paper investigated how use of an Interactive Computer-Based Simulation (ICBS) prior to performing a Laboratory Inquiry-Based Experiment (LIBE), in a conceptually oriented physics course, affects students' conceptual development of some physics ideas in Mechanics, Waves/Optics and Thermal Physics. ICBS and LIBE were selected from previous research studies, or developed to challenge students' ideas. These were integrated into a sixteen-week semester physics content class. The 13 science teachers who participated in the study were not physicists. The data collection process was based upon a self-control design where each participant alternated between treatment and control presentations. Interviews (pre-, inter-, and post-interviews) and conceptual tests (pre-, inter- and post-tests) were used, for each module presented in the class. Each one of the three physics areas had four modules, and for each module the participants responded to the three tests and participated in the three interviews. Both the tests and the interviews were statistically analyzed for (a) any significant changes in students' ability to make "scientifically accepted" predictions (a physics textbook was used as criterion) and give "scientifically accepted" explanations regarding a LIBE, after they had used an ICBS, (b) the extent to which students' experience with an ICBS, before and after the conduction of a LIBE, fostered conceptual change, and (c) investigating students' attitudes towards ICBS, LIBE, or both ICBS and LIBE, and which of them promotes more positive attitudes towards the physics areas of the study. Results indicated that students that used an ICBS before a LIBE performed significantly better than students who did not use an ICBS before a LIBE. The use of an ICBS improved students' ability to make "scientifically accepted" predictions and give "scientifically accepted" explanations regarding a LIBE, and fostered a significant conceptual change in all three physics areas that were selected for this study. Students' attitudes towards Physics, ICBS, LIBE, and both ICBS and LIBE were all found positive.
Prodonovich, Samuel; Perry, Laura B.; Taggart, Andrew
This paper reviews research and theory relating to aspirations for higher education as a cultural capacity. Understanding the social and cultural dimensions of aspirations for higher education is important as they are increasingly becoming part of social commentary and more recently educational policy, research and practice. This paper synthesises…
Zhang, Xiaofen; Clements, M. A.; Ellerton, Nerida F.
Area-model representations seem to have been dominant in the teaching and learning of fractions, especially in primary school mathematics curricula. In this study, we investigated 40 fifth grade children's understandings of the unit fractions, 1/2, 1/3, and 1/4, represented through a variety of different models. Analyses of pre-teaching test and…
This study investigated fourth graders’ self?generated analogies, that is, own analogies giving self?explanations — opposed to analogies provided by a teacher — and the effects of their collaborative reasoning and arguing over these analogies on individual understanding of three scientific phenomena concerning air pressure. At the beginning the children were individually asked to give their own explanations, explicitly encouraged to
Archaeologists have used material artifacts found in a physical space to gain an understanding about the people who occupied that space. Likewise, as users wander through a digital library, they leave behind data-based artifacts of their activity in the virtual space. Digital library archaeologists can gather these artifacts and employ inductive…
While a great deal of research has been done on identity development around awareness of racism and heterosexism, little has been conducted on understanding how Jews come to make sense of the impact of anti-Semitism (anti-Jewish oppression) on their lives. This article, based on my qualitative dissertation (MacDonald-Dennis, 2005) that explores…
Puk, Tom; Stibbards, Adam
In a previous study, Puk and Stibbards (2010) demonstrated that a cohort of teacher candidates entering into an ecological literacy, Bachelor of Education program had very immature understanding of complex ecological concepts. Specifically, written definitions were either absent entirely, very vague, or missing essential criterial attributes, as…
Powers, Angela R.
This study explored the relationship between secondary chemistry students' conceptual representations of acid-base chemistry, as shown in student-constructed concept maps, and their ability to solve acid-base problems, represented by their score on an 18-item paper and pencil test, the Acid-Base Concept Assessment (ABCA). The ABCA, consisting of both multiple-choice and short-answer items, was originally designed using a question-type by subtopic matrix, validated by a panel of experts, and refined through pilot studies and factor analysis to create the final instrument. The concept map task included a short introduction to concept mapping, a prototype concept map, a practice concept-mapping activity, and the instructions for the acid-base concept map task. The instruments were administered to chemistry students at two high schools; 108 subjects completed both instruments for this study. Factor analysis of ABCA results indicated that the test was unifactorial for these students, despite the intention to create an instrument with multiple "question-type" scales. Concept maps were scored both holistically and by counting valid concepts. The two approaches were highly correlated (r = 0.75). The correlation between ABCA score and concept-map score was 0.29 for holistically-scored concept maps and 0.33 for counted-concept maps. Although both correlations were significant, they accounted for only 8.8 and 10.2% of variance in ABCA scores, respectively. However, when the reliability of the instruments used is considered, more than 20% of the variance in ABCA scores may be explained by concept map scores. MANOVAs for ABCA and concept map scores by instructor, student gender, and year in school showed significant differences for both holistic and counted concept-map scores. Discriminant analysis revealed that the source of these differences was the instruction variable. Significant differences between classes receiving different instruction were found in the frequency of concepts listed by students for 9 of 10 concepts evaluated. Mean ABCA scores did not differ significantly between the two instruction groups. The results of this study failed to provide evidence of conceptual distinctions among different "types" of problem-solving items. The results suggested that several factors influence success in chemistry problem solving, including concept knowledge and organization. Further research into the nature of chemistry problems and problem solving is recommended.
Yan, Na; Baas, Andreas C. W.
The formation and evolution of parabolic aeolian dunes depend on vegetation, and as such are particularly sensitive to changes in environmental controls (e.g., temperature, precipitation, and wind regime) as well as to human disturbances (e.g., grazing, agriculture, and recreation). Parabolic dunes can develop from the stabilisation of highly mobile barchan dunes and transverse dunes as well as from blowouts, as a consequence of colonisation and establishment of vegetation when aeolian sand transport is reduced and/or when water stress is relieved (by increasing precipitation, for instance). Conversely, existing parabolic dunes can be activated and may be transformed into barchan dunes and/or transverse dunes when vegetation suffers environmental or anthropogenic stresses. Predicted increases in temperature and drought severity in various regions raise concerns that dune activation and transformations may intensify, and this intensification would have far-reaching implications for environmental, social, and economic sustainability. To date, a broad examination of the development of parabolic dunes and their related transformations across a variety of climate gradients has been absent. This paper reviews existing literature, compares data on the morphology and development of parabolic dunes in a comprehensive global inventory, and scrutinises the mechanisms of different dune transformations and the eco-geomorphic interactions involved. This knowledge is then integrated into a conceptual framework to facilitate understanding and prediction of potential aeolian dune transformations induced by changes in environmental controls and human activities. This conceptual framework can aid judicious land management policies for better adaptations to climatic changes.
Pulling, Azalie Cecile
The purpose of this study was to use deep time, that is geologic time as a mechanism to explore middle school students' understanding of the natural history of the earth and the evolution of life on earth. Geologic time is a logical precursor to middle school students' understanding of biological evolution. This exploratory, mixed model study used qualitative and quantitative methods in each stage of the research to explore sixth grade students, understanding of geologic time, their worldviews (e.g., conceptual ecology), and conceptual change. The study included fifty-nine students in the large group study and four case studies. The primary data collection instrument was the Geologic Timeline Survey. Additional data collection instruments and methods (e.g., concept evaluation statement, journal entries, word associations, interviews, and formal tests) were used to triangulate the study findings. These data were used to create narrative modal profiles of the categories of student thinking that emerged from the large group analysis: Middle School (MS) Scientists (correct science), MS Protoscientists (approaching correct science), MS Prescientists (dinosaur understanding), and MS Pseudoscientists (fundamental religious understanding). Case studies were used to provide a thick description of each category. This study discovered a pattern of student thinking about geologic time that moved along a knowledge continuum from pseudoscience (fundamental creationist understanding) to prescience (everyday-science understanding) to science (correct or approaching correct science). The researcher described the deep-seated misconceptions produced by the prescience thinking level, e.g., dinosaur misconceptions, and cautioned the science education community about using dinosaurs as a glamour-science topic. The most limiting conceptual frameworks found in this study were prescience (a dinosaur focus) and pseudoscience (a fundamental religious focus). An understanding of geologic time as Piaget's system of time (e.g., chronological ordering of events, before and after relationships, duration or evolutionary time) was a necessary conceptual framework for students to develop a scientific understanding of deep time. An examination of students, worldviews and the interface of science and religion indicated that students often successfully applied a demarcation between science and religion in their public thinking (e.g., the formal classroom setting), but in their private thinking, the demarcation was often blurred.
PDI: Discussion and Writing in the Inquiry Based Elementary Science Classroom: Critical partners in the development of scientific reasoning and conceptual understanding, New Orleans, Louisiana; March 18, 2009
This Professional Development Institute focuses on the development and use of literacy skills in science to foster upper elementary (3rd-5th grade) students' scientific reasoning as they move from direct experience to conceptual understanding. To set the stage and establish a model of classroom based guided inquiry, participants will first engage in a brief science investigation. This will be followed by an in-depth exploration of the roles of oral and written language in deepening scientific reasoning. Using classroom videos, transcripts of student discussions, student writing, and mini-case studies, we will identify a range of instructional strategies that: structure and guide serious accountable talk among students; foster careful use of notebooks for recording and concluding; and provide opportunities for students to apply their understanding through different genres of writing. We will also focus on the relationship between talking and writing and the important back and forth that takes place as students clarify and deepen their understanding of science ideas. Participants also will have the opportunity to explore the relationship between literacy and science teaching and learning and the important connections that can and should be made in the classroom. Much is being made of the connection between science and literacy in many educational arenas. Publishers are producing science readers by the dozen. Science journals and science notebooks are more and more common. Teachers and other educational leaders are emphasizing the connection in the hopes of keeping science off the back burner. Others see science as a way to motivate students to build their literacy skills and improve test scores. This institute stems from the growing literature on the role of discussion and writing in interpreting, analyzing and synthesizing the ideas and experiences of scientific investigations. There is little doubt that direct experience with science phenomena is critical to student science learning, but it does not in itself lead to the development of conclusions and new theories. For this to take place students need to reflect on their experience, examine and analyze their data, debate and discuss their ideas, write down their conclusions, and communicate them to others. In other words they need to use language - literacy. How they use language and what teachers do to support this is the focus of this institute. This institute is intended for science educators interested in exploring how discussion and writing permeate effective inquiry based instruction at the upper elementary level (3-5th grade). In large and small highly interactive groups, participants will have the opportunity to learn from the resources provided by the institute leaders as well as from one another. The presenters of the workshop reflect a critical partnership between literacy and science educators. Three of the presenters of this institute are science educators with many years of experience in developing inquiry based curricula, working with both pre-service and in-service teachers on inquiry based science teaching and learning. One of the presenters is an expert in comprehensive literacy and has many years experience providing professional development to teachers. In 2003, the Center for Science Education at EDC received an NSF grant to develop professional development materials to enhance the use of language in the inquiry based classroom with a particular focus on science discussions; student writing in notebooks and in other contexts; and the explicit connection between the teaching and learning of literacy and that of science. This institute is based on this work.
The purpose of this study was to investigate how undergraduate students at the University of Northern Iowa who had taken prior coursework on non-calculus general physics with a unit on mechanics understand the Newtonian model of motion. In general, the study was concerned with reasoning strategies, the preconceptions that give rise to these strategies, and the schema that might be
Garnett, Pamela J.; Treagust, David F.
This research used semistructured interviews to investigate students' (n=32) understanding of electrochemistry following a 7-9 week course of instruction. Three misconceptions were identified and incorporated with five previously reported into an alternative framework about electric current involving drifting electrons. Also noted was the tendency…
Nerur, Sridhar; Cannon, Alan; Balijepally, Venugopal; Bond, Philip
While the growing popularity of agile development methodologies is undeniable, there has been little systematic exploration of its intellectual foundation. Such an effort would be an important first step in understanding this paradigm's underlying premises. This understanding, in turn, would be invaluable in our assessment of current practices as well as in our efforts to advance the field of software engineering. Drawing on a variety of sources, both within and outside the discipline, we argue that the concepts underpinning agile development methodologies are by no means novel. In the tradition of General Systems Theory this paper advocates a transdisciplinary examination of agile development methodologies to extend the intellectual boundaries of software development. This is particularly important as the field moves beyond instrumental processes aimed at satisfying mere technical considerations.
Dykstra, Dewey I.; Sweet, Dale R.
Methods of physics education research were applied to find what kinds of changes in 4th, 6th, and 8th grade student understanding of motion can occur and at what age. Such findings are necessary for the physics community to effectively discharge its role in advising and assisting pre-college physics education. Prior to and after instruction the students were asked to carefully describe several demonstrated accelerated motions. Most pre-instruction descriptions were of the direction of motion only. After instruction, many more of the students gave descriptions of the motion as continuously changing. Student responses to the diagnostic and to the activity materials revealed the presence of a third "snapshot" view of motion not discussed in the literature. The 4th and 6th grade students gave similar pre-instructional descriptions of the motion, but the 4th grade students did not exhibit the same degree of change in descriptions after instruction. Our findings suggest that students as early as 6th grade can develop changes in ideas about motion needed to construct Newtonian-like ideas about force. Students' conceptions about motion change little under traditional physics instruction from these grade levels through college level.
In this article, the author describes how he used photography to conceptualize social justice to a group of undergraduate students. As part of their final assessment, the students were required to take photographs that represented their understanding of social justice. The author believed that photography provided a rich way to understand student…
Pocovi, M. Cecilia
Many students in physics courses fail to achieve a desired conceptual change because they assign an incorrect ontology to the to-be-learned concept. This situation has been detected in previous research for the case of field lines: many college students assign material properties to the lines and describe them, for example, as tubes that contain…
Varghese, Mary E.; Parker, Loran Carleton; Adedokun, Omolola; Shively, Monica; Burgess, Wilella; Childress, Amy; Bessenbacher, Ann
This qualitative study examines the process of student learning in a small-business experiential internship programme that pairs highly qualified undergraduates with local small or start-up companies. The Cognitive Apprenticeship model developed by Collins et al (1991) was used to conceptualize students' reported experiences. The results revealed…
Fletcher, Teresa B.; Benshoff, James M.; Richburg, Melanie J.
Student-athletes have unique challenges as they confront pressures to perform both athletically and academically. The authors present a systems approach that will enhance the conceptualization skills that counselors need to intervene more effectively with college student-athletes as well as address counselors' own stereotypes and biases about…
Feenstra, Jennifer S.
College is a time of exploration for students. College students who are Christian may also engage in exploration of God's call on their lives, a discernment of their vocation. One pedagogical technique that can help us help students explore vocation is service-learning. To better understand their vocation, students need to understand themselves…
Rebecca Fulop (San Francisco Unified School District)
Students go to school to learn. How much, however, do students understand about the biological basis of this everyday process? Blackwell et al. (1) demonstrated a correlation between education about learning and academic achievement. Yet there are few studies investigating high school students' conceptions of learning. In this mixed-methods research study, written assessments were administered to 339 high school students in an urban school district after they completed their required biology education, and videotaped interviews were conducted with 15 students. The results indicated that the majority of students know little about the biological basis of learning, even with prompting, and they recall having learned little about it in school. Students appear to believe that people control their own ability to learn, and some have developed personal hypotheses to describe the learning process. On written assessments, 75% of participants demonstrated a nonbiological framework for learning, and, during interviews, 67% of participants revealed misconceptions about the biological basis of learning. Sample quotes of these interviews are included in this report, and the implications of these findings are discussed.
In introducing this chapter, I pointed out that traditional theories of learning and of cognitive development were in conflict with regard to the effects of specific learning. Developmental theorists saw general structures as influencing specific learning but not being affected by it, whereas learning theorists took the opposite view - that general structures (if they existed) were affected only by specific experiences. In the formulation of neo-Piagetian theory, both general and specific effects were acknowledged; however, general effects were assigned to mental capacity and specific ones to the child's schematic repertoire. Thus, the possibility of reciprocal influence did not emerge (or at least was not explored). In the present chapter, I have proposed the existence of such a reciprocal influence and explored its consequences. At a general level, the two consequences that follow are (1) that the overall pace of development is accelerated and (2) that the profile of development is evened out because benefits obtained from high-frequency learning experiences are passed on, via the mediation of the central conceptual structure, to low-frequency ones. These two effects were then advanced as one possible explanation for the difference in the data obtained between different cultures and different social classes. In the former case, the explanation utilized the notion that the benefits of high-frequency learning could be passed on to low-frequency situations via the mediation of general structures; in the latter case, the explanation drew on the notion that experiential loops can accelerate or decelerate development by magnifying experiential differences that are relatively small but that prevail across most of the tasks that a child encounters. The last half of the present chapter was devoted to specifying the dynamics of this sort of interaction in mathematical terms. The data that were obtained in Chapters III and V were extremely regular and showed an even pattern of development across different tasks; hence, they could conceivably be modeled with single curves or even straight lines. The mathematical model chosen to fit these findings was much more complex, however. Each growth curve was generated by an expression that contained a dynamic tension between two opposing categories of effect: those whose tendency is to make different developmental pathways disperse (different growth rates and the effect of compounding) and those whose tendency is to hold development to a single course (the constraints imposed by a growing carrying capacity and the "binding together" or "squeezing" effect generated by the reciprocal feedback loop). The disadvantage of this sort of modeling is clearly its complexity. An equally clear advantage, however, is that it allows one to provide a unified explanation for a set of data that might otherwise seem quite disparate and to express relations in quantitative rather than merely qualitative terms. This, in turn, permits one to check the entire set of proposed relations for their consistency, and to explore the dynamic pattern of their interaction, by conducting "intellectual experiments" and checking them against common sense and/or existing data sets. In the present chapter, this approach has been used for the effects of social class and of culture. In principle, however, it could potentially be used equally to explore the effects of other variables, such as those that underlie intellectual retardation and/or "giftedness". At least for the moment, then, the mathematical modeling approach looks promising. PMID:8657167
Sura Wuttiprom; Manjula Devi Sharma; Ian D. Johnston; Ratchapak Chitaree; Chernchok Soankwan
Conceptual surveys have become increasingly popular at many levels to probe various aspects of science education research such as measuring student understanding of basic concepts and assessing the effectiveness of pedagogical material. The aim of this study was to construct a valid and reliable multiple?choice conceptual survey to investigate students’ understanding of introductory quantum physics concepts. We examined course syllabi
Jackson, S A
An in-depth investigation into flow state was conducted in order to understand how this optimal state is experienced by elite athletes. Twenty-eight elite-level athletes, representing 7 sports, were interviewed on their perceptions of flow state during performance of their sport. Csikszentmihalyi's (1990) model of the flow state was examined for its applicability to elite athletes. Correspondence was found between the dimensions of flow, as described by Csikszentmihalyi (1990), and the athletes' descriptions of their experience of flow; some dimensions received greater support through the qualitative analysis of the athletes' descriptions than did other dimensions. Those dimensions of flow most represented across the group's data were the autotelic experience of flow, total concentration on the task at hand, merging of action and awareness, and the paradox of control. The analyses provided a detailed, sport-specific picture of flow state in elite athletes. PMID:8735997
Tschepikow, William K.
Declining response rates among college students threaten the effectiveness of survey research at institutions of higher education. The purpose of this qualitative study was to understand the conditions that promote participation in survey research among this population. The researcher identified three themes through this study. First, participants…
Engelhard, George, Jr.
The major purpose of this study is to describe a conceptual framework for examining differential item functioning (DIF) and differential person functioning (DPF) as types of model-data misfit within the context of assessing students with disabilities. Specifically, DIF and DPF can be viewed through the lens of residual analyses. Residual analyses…
Liao, Ya-Wen; She, Hsiao-Ching
This study reports the impacts of the Scientific Concept Construction and Reconstruction (SCCR) digital learning system on eighth grade students' concept construction, conceptual change, and scientific reasoning involving the topic of "atoms". A two-factorial experimental design was carried out to investigate the effects of the approach of…
Adeleke, M. A.
The paper examined the possibility of finding out if improvements in students' problem solving performance in simultaneous linear equation will be recorded with the use of procedural and conceptual learning strategies and in addition to find out which of the strategies will be more effective. The study adopted a pretest, post test control group…
Davis, Hope Smith
This dissertation is an analysis of student and teacher conceptualizations of reading and learning in two separate scripted reading intervention environments, as implemented in a combined junior/senior high school in the Midwest. The youngest participants (grades 7-9), with reading levels four to six years below grade level, as defined through…
Yeh, Kuan-Hue; She, Hsiao-Ching
The purpose of this study is to examine the difference in effectiveness between two on-line scientific learning programs--one with an argumentation component and one without an argumentation component--on students' scientific argumentation ability and conceptual change. A quasi-experimental design was used in this study. Two classes of 8th grade…
Dega, Bekele Gashe; Kriek, Jeanne; Mogese, Temesgen Fereja
The purpose of this study was to investigate Ethiopian physics undergraduate students' conceptual change in the concepts of electric potential and energy (EPE) and electromagnetic induction (EMI). A quasi-experimental design was used to study the effect of cognitive perturbation using physics interactive simulations (CPS) in relation to…
Bennett, Susanne; Saks, Loretta Vitale
This article conceptualizes an attachment-based model of the student-field instructor relationship, based on empirical research concerning internal working models of attachment, which continue into adulthood and serve as templates for life-long relating. Supportive relationships within a noncritical context are salient for effective supervision;…
The World Health Organization claimed recently that improving patient adherence to long term therapies would be more beneficial than any biomedical progress. First, however, we must understand its mechanisms. In this paper I propose a novel approach using concepts elaborated in a field rarely explored in medicine, the philosophy of mind. While conventional psychological models (eg, the Health Belief Model) provide explanations and predictions which have only a statistical value, the philosophical assumption that mental states (eg, beliefs) are causally efficient (mental causation) can provide the basis for a causal theory of health behaviors. This paper shows that nonadherence to long term therapies can be described as the medical expression of a philosophical concept, that is, weakness of will. I use philosophical explanations of this concept to suggest a mechanistic explanation of nonadherence. I propose that it results from the failure of two principles of rationality. First, a principle of continence, described by the philosopher Donald Davidson in his explanation of weakness of will. This principle exhorts us to act after having considered all available arguments and according to which option we consider best. However, patients conforming to this principle of continence should rationally be nonadherent. Indeed, when patients face a choice between adherence and nonadherence, they must decide, in general, between a large, but delayed reward (eg, health) and a small, but immediate reward (eg, smoking a cigarette). According to concepts elaborated by George Ainslie and Jon Elster, the force of our desires is strongly influenced by the proximity of reward. This inter-temporal choice theory on one hand, and the mere principle of continence on the other, should therefore lead to nonadherence. Nevertheless, adherence to long term therapies is possible, as a result of the intervention of an additional principle, the principle of foresight, which tells us to give priority to mental states oriented towards the future. PMID:19920939
Beer, Christopher P.
This study analyzes the nature of pre-service teachers' conceptual models of various electromagnetic phenomena, specifically electrical current, electrical resistance, and light/matter interactions. This is achieved through the students answering the three questions on electromagnetism using a free response approach including both verbal and…
Duit, Reinders; Roth, Wolff-Michael; Komorek, Michael; Wilbers, Jens
Illustrates how a well-designed curriculum can lead students to construct an unwanted conception. Concludes that the conceptual-change-cum-discourse perspective has the potential to integrate the affordances of both methodological approaches and past empirical accomplishments. Contains 33 references. (DDR)
Kuo, Eric; Champney, Danielle; Little, Angela
One thread in education research has been to investigate whether and in what ways students "transfer" conceptual knowledge from one context to another. We argue that in understanding students' reasoning across contexts, it can additionally be productive to attend to their epistemological framing. We present a case study of one student (Will), whose reasoning on two similarly structured approximation problems does not draw on pieces of conceptual knowledge across contexts in a manner that experts might view as productive. We further show that attending to Will's epistemological framing aids our understanding of why he draws on different types of knowledge on the two problems.
Background 'Innovation' has become a policy focus in its own right in many states as they compete to position themselves in the emerging knowledge economies. Innovation in biomedicine is a global enterprise in which 'Rising Power' states figure prominently, and which undoubtedly will re-shape health systems and health economies globally. Scientific and technological innovation processes and policies raise difficult issues in the domains of science/technology, civil society, and the economic and healthcare marketplace. The production of knowledge in these fields is complex, uncertain, inter-disciplinary and inter-institutional, and subject to a continuing political struggle for advantage. As part of this struggle, a wide variety of issues - regulation, intellectual property, ethics, scientific boundaries, healthcare market formation - are raised and policy agendas negotiated. Methods A range of social science disciplines and approaches have conceptualised such innovation processes. Against a background of concepts such as the competition state and the developmental state, and national innovation systems, we give an overview of a range of approaches that have potential for advancing understanding of governance of global life science and biomedical innovation, with special reference to the 'Rising Powers', in order to examine convergences and divergences between them. Conceptual approaches that we focus on include those drawn from political science/political economy, sociology of technology; Innovation Studies and Science & Technology Studies. The paper is part of a project supported by the UK ESRC's Rising Powers programme. Results We show convergences and complementarities between the approaches discussed, and argue that the role of the national state itself has become relatively neglected in much of the relevant theorising. Conclusions We conclude that an approach is required that enables innovation and governance to be seen as 'co-producing' each other in a multi-level, global ecology of innovation, taking account of the particular, differing characteristics of different emerging scientific fields and technologies. We suggest key points to take account of in order in the future to move toward a satisfactory integrative conceptual framework, capable of better understanding the processes of the emergence, state steerage and transnational governance of innovative biomedical sectors in the Rising Powers and global context. PMID:21349182
Wallace, Colin S.; Prather, Edward E.; Duncan, Douglas K.
This is our fourth paper in our five paper series describing our national study of general education astronomy students' conceptual and reasoning difficulties with cosmology. While previous papers in this series focused on the processes by which we collected and quantitatively analyzed our data, this paper presents the most common pre-instruction…
Haller, Coralie; Fisher, Ron; Gapp, Rod
Purpose: To provide an understanding of the ways in which Confucian Heritage students use reflection as a means of learning at university. Design/methodology/approach: The approach is an exploratory qualitative study into the ways in which Confucian Heritage students learn while studying at university. Data are collected by means of…
Background Observation of the performance of medical students in the clinical environment is a key part of assessment and learning. To date, few authors have examined written comments provided to students and considered what aspects of observed performance they represent. The aim of this study was to examine the quantity and quality of written comments provided to medical students by different assessors using a team-based model of assessment, and to determine the aspects of medical student performance on which different assessors provide comments. Methods Medical students on a 7-week General Surgery & Anesthesiology clerkship received written comments on ‘Areas of Excellence’ and ‘Areas for Improvement’ from physicians, residents, nurses, patients, peers and administrators. Mixed-methods were used to analyze the quality and quantity of comments provided and to generate a conceptual framework of observed student performance. Results 1,068 assessors and 127 peers provided 2,988 written comments for 127 students, a median of 188 words per student divided into 26 “Areas of Excellence” and 5 “Areas for Improvement”. Physicians provided the most comments (918), followed by patients (692) and peers (586); administrators provided the fewest (91). The conceptual framework generated contained four major domains: ‘Student as Physician-in-Training’, ‘Student as Learner’, ‘Student as Team Member’, and ‘Student as Person.’ Conclusions A wide range of observed medical student performance is recorded in written comments provided by members of the surgical healthcare team. Different groups of assessors provide comments on different aspects of student performance, suggesting that comments provided from a single viewpoint may potentially under-represent or overlook some areas of student performance. We hope that the framework presented here can serve as a basis to better understand what medical students do every day, and how they are perceived by those with whom they work. PMID:23249445
The purpose of this study is to examine elementary teacher's understanding, perceptions, and experiences of working with students in foster care. The researcher examined whether teachers are informed about students in foster care, determined teacher's understanding of the foster care system, and how their students are affected. The results…
Butler, Michael J. R.; Reddy, Peter
Purpose: This paper aims to focus on developing critical understanding in human resource management (HRM) students in Aston Business School, UK. The paper reveals that innovative teaching methods encourage deep approaches to study, an indicator of students reaching their own understanding of material and ideas. This improves student employability…
Young-Loveridge, Jenny; Mills, Judith
This article explores how a focus on understanding divisibility rules can be used to help deepen students' understanding of multiplication and division with whole numbers. It is based on research with seven Year 7-8 teachers who were observed teaching a group of students a rule for divisibility by nine. As part of the lesson, students were shown a…
Dig-ta Video, Learn-ng Styes, and Student Understanding of Kinematics Graphs Teresa Larkin Video, Learning Styles, and Student Understanding of Kinematics Graphs Introduction Student learning instructional methods have been shown to be inadequate in terms of promoting deep learning and long
Ronda, Erlina R.
This paper presents a research-based framework for analyzing and monitoring students' understanding of functions in equation form. The framework consists of "growth points" which describe "big ideas" of students' understanding of the concept. The data were collected from Grades 8, 9, and 10 students using a set of tasks involving linear and…
Harris, Lois R.; Brown, Gavin T.; Harnett, Jennifer A.
While feedback is a key factor for improving student learning, little is known about how students understand and experience feedback within the classroom. This study analysed 193 New Zealand primary and secondary students' survey responses alongside drawings of their understandings and experiences of feedback to examine how they experience,…
This paper is a case study of first-year science and engineering students' understandings of plagiarism. Students were surveyed for their views on scenarios illustrating instances of plagiarism in the context of the academic work and assessment of science and engineering students. The aim was to explore their understandings of plagiarism and their…
Janssen, Fred J. J. M.; Tigelaar, Dineke E. H.; Verloop, Nico
Teaching for understanding requires teachers to organize thought-demanding activities which continually challenge students to apply and extend their prior knowledge. Research shows that student teachers often are unable to develop lessons in teaching for understanding. We explored how a domain-specific heuristic can assist student biology teachers…
Hung-Chih Yen; Hsiao-Lin Tuan; Chi-Hung Liao
The purposes of this study were to investigate students’ conceptual learning outcomes and the effect of motivation on students’\\u000a conceptual learning outcomes in two different contexts: a Web-based and a classroom-based instruction, which incorporated\\u000a the Dual Situation Learning Model (DSLM). Nine classes of Grade eight students (N?=?190) were involved in the study; five classes participated in a Web-based context and
In this action research study of my classroom of 8th grade mathematics, I investigated the influence of vocabulary instruction on students’ understanding of the mathematics concepts. I discovered that knowing the meaning of the vocabulary did play a major role in the students’ understanding of the daily lessons and the ability to take tests. Understanding the vocabulary and the concepts
Miller, Jodie; Warren, Elizabeth
Students living in disadvantaged contexts and whose second language is English (ESL) are at risk of not succeeding in school mathematics. It has been internationally recognised that students' socioeconomic background and their achievements in mathematics is more pronounced for Australian students (Thomson et al. 2011). This gap is even more prominent for students who also have English as their second language (ESL). This paper explores the impact of the representations, oral language and engagement in mathematics (RoleM) learning experiences on ESL students' performance in mathematics in the early years (foundation-year 2). All students participating in the study are from disadvantaged contexts ( n = 461). The sample comprised 328 students who identified themselves as having English as a second language (ESL) and 133 mainstream students. Pre- and post-tests were conducted at the commencement and completion of each school year. All students demonstrated a significant improvement on their post-test scores, with ESL students displaying greater gains than the mainstream students. Additionally, students' results were meeting norm-referenced expectations for students of the same age. A hypothesised taxonomy was developed to further investigate which types of test items foundation ESL students displayed greatest gains. ESL students again outperformed the mainstream cohort on all levels of test categorisation, including questions that were linguistically and conceptually challenging for foundation students.