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Understanding Objectivity in Research Reported in the Journal of Research in Science Teaching (Wiley-Blackwell)

  • Mansoor NiazEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Contemporary Trends and Issues in Science Education book series (CTISE, volume 46)

Abstract

Based on a website search with the keyword “objectivity,” 110 articles in the 24-year period (1992–2015) referred to some form of objectivity and were classified according to the following criteria: Levels I–V (same as presented in Chap.  3). Results obtained showed the following distribution of the 110 articles evaluated: Level I = 4, Level II = 33, Level III = 68, Level IV = 5, and Level V = none. Only 5% (5 out of 110) of the articles were considered to have an understanding of objectivity that approximated to its historical evolution. None of the articles referred to the work of Daston and Galison on objectivity or mentioned “trained judgment.” Traditional standards of educational research are based on positivist philosophy. One article reported that based on Guba and Lincoln’s notion of trustworthiness traditional standards of internal and external validity, reliability, and objectivity can be replaced by notions of credibility, transferability, dependability, and triangulation of data sources (Level III). In order to facilitate objectivity and researcher independence it is generally recommended in educational research that the researchers must maintain a distance between themselves and the subjects of their investigation. This prescription is, however, problematic as one article reported that in order to establish a mutually acceptable dialogue with the teacher in the classroom it is important to audit the process rather than the product (Level III).

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Epistemology of Science Group, Department of ChemistryUniversidad de OrienteCumanáVenezuela

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