Representing scientific activity: Affordances and constraints of central design and enactment features of a model-based inquiry unit

Todd Campbell, Ron Gray, Xavier Fazio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

This research explores how explaining an anchoring phenomena and engaging students in investigations, as central designs of a model-based inquiry (MBI) unit, afforded or constrained the representation of scientific activity in the science classroom. This research is considered timely as recent standards documents and scholars in the field have highlighted the significance of identifying what features of scientific activity are important and how these can be represented for students in classrooms. Through taking advantage of qualitative research methods to closely examine the enactment of an MBI unit, both affordances and constraints were identified for each design. More specifically, explaining an anchoring phenomenon provided a context for more authentically framing the work of students, while investigations afforded students insight into the role these play in the refinement of models. Further, the teacher's attempts to support student reasoning and, at times, reasoning for students when they were found struggling were the most salient constraints identified connected to explaining an anchoring phenomenon and engaging students in investigations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)475-486
Number of pages12
JournalSchool Science and Mathematics
Volume119
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

Keywords

  • inquiry
  • model-based inquiry
  • models
  • scientific activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • History and Philosophy of Science

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