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Improving Science Education: The Contribution of Research


his book takes stock of where we are in science education research, and considers where we ought now to be going. It explores how and whether the research effort in science education has contributed to improvements in the practice of teaching science and the science curriculum. It contains contributions from an international group of science educators. Each chapter explores a specific area of research in science education, considering why this research is worth doing, and its potential for development. Together they look candidly at important general issues such as the impact of research on classroom practice and the development of science education as a progressive field of research. The book was produced in celebration of the work of the late Rosalind Driver. All the principal contributors to the book had professional links with her, and the three sections of the book focus on issues that were of central importance in her work: research on teaching and learning in science; the role of science within the school curriculum and the nature of the science education we ought to be providing for young people; and the achievements of, and future agenda for, research in science education.


Table of contents 


  • Contents
  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction
  • Section 1 Researching teaching ani learning in science
    • Teaching situations
      • 1 Why things fall: evidence and warrants for belief in a college astronomy course
      • 2 Designing teaching situations in the secondary school
    • Assessing ani evaluating
      • 3 Formative assessment and science education: a model and theorizing
      • 4 National evaluation for the improvement of science teaching
    • Developing science teachers
      • 5 Learning to teach science in the primary school
      • 6 Managing science teachers' development
    • Theorizing learning
      • 7 Status as the hallmark of conceptual learning
      • 8 Analysing discourse in the science classroom
  • Section 2 Reviewing the role and purpose of science in the school curriculum
    • 9 Providing suitable content in the ‘science for all’ curriculum
    • 10 Interesting all children in ‘science for all’
    • 11 Making the nature of science explicit
    • 12 ‘Science for all’: time for a paradigm shift?
    • 13 Science, views about science, and pluralistic science education
    • 14 Renegotiating the culture of school science
  • Section 3 Researching science education
    • 15 Research programmes and the student science learning literature
    • 16 Goals, methods and achievements of research in science education
    • 17 Didactics of science: the forgotten dimension in science education research?
    • 18 Policy, practice and research: the case of testing and assessment
  • Notes on contributors
  • Index

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