High School Students’ Reasons for Their Science Dispositions: Community-Based Innovative Technology-Embedded Environmental Research Projects

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Abstract

The purpose of this investigation was to qualitatively describe high school students’ reasons for their science dispositions (attitude, perception, and self-confidence) based on their long-term experience with innovative technology-embedded environmental research projects. Students in small groups conducted research projects in and out of school with the help of their teachers and community experts (scientists and engineers). During the 3-year period of this nationally funded project, a total of 135 students from five schools in a mid-west State participated in research activities. Of the 135 students, 53 students were individually interviewed to explore reasons for their science dispositions. Students’ reasons for each disposition were grouped into categories, and corresponding frequency was converted to a percentage. The categories of reasons were not only attributed to the use of innovative technologies in environmental research but also the contexts and events that surrounded it. The reasons that influenced students’ science dispositions positively were because engaging in environmental research projects with technology contributed to easing fear and difficulty, building a research team, disseminating findings, communicating with the community, researching with scientists, training by teachers, and acknowledging teachers’ knowledge. These results advanced how and why students develop science dispositions in the positive direction, which are as follows: building science teacher capacity, developing a community of inquirers, and committing to improve pedagogical practices.

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  • 25 October 2018

    The original version of this article unfortunately contained a mistake. The name of “Dima Kassab” was incorrectly spelled as “Dimma Kasab”.

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Acknowledgements

The research reported is being undertaken as part of the project Translating Innovative Technologies into Classrooms (TITiC): Student-Teacher Scientific Research in Lake Erie Water Sheds. This study funded by the NSF-ITEST-TITiC under Project No. ESIE 0423387.

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Correspondence to Jazlin Ebenezer.

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The original version of this article was revised: The original version of this article unfortunately contained a mistake. The name of “Dima Kassab” was incorrectly spelled as “Dimma Kasab”. The correct name is now shown here.

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Ebenezer, J., Kaya, O.N. & Kassab, D. High School Students’ Reasons for Their Science Dispositions: Community-Based Innovative Technology-Embedded Environmental Research Projects. Res Sci Educ 50, 1341–1365 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11165-018-9735-6

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Keywords

  • Science disposition
  • Environmental research
  • Innovative technologies
  • Science learning