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Decision Making and Use of Evidence in a Socio-scientific Problem on Air Quality

  • Shirley SimonEmail author
  • Ruth Amos
Chapter
Part of the Contemporary Trends and Issues in Science Education book series (CTISE, volume 39)

Abstract

The study reported here arises from the overlapping interests of the two authors as we came together as supervisor and student for a master’s dissertation. As an experienced researcher, Shirley Simon had been studying argumentation in school science over many years, in particular focusing on the ways in which teachers develop their pedagogical approach to argument and the challenges they experience when trying to change their practice (Simon, Erduran, & Osborne, 2006; Simon & Maloney, 2007). One feature of Simon’s work with teachers was to study how they organised and managed small group discussion, role play, and class debates, and how students engaged with scientific evidence or socio-scientific issues (SSI) to construct arguments in different contexts (Osborne, Erduran, & Simon, 2004a). The research, conducted in schools in the United Kingdom, led to the development of activities and guidance for teachers in argumentation (Osborne, Erduran, & Simon, 2004b), which coincided with changes in the science component of the English national curriculum for 14–16 year olds, and the emergence of a course aimed to enhance scientific literacy (SL) called Twenty First Century Science (OCR, 2005). The new national curriculum places more emphasis on the nature of science (NOS), and Twenty First Century Science includes activities for students to debate and construct arguments on issues related to science topics, with a focus on relevance to everyday life; it also includes pedagogical guidance for teachers in how to organise and manage such activities.

Keywords

Preservice Teacher Public Transport Wind Farm Discussion Activity Small Group Discussion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V.  2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of EducationUniversity of LondonLondonUK

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