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Education & Language - Science Education | Rethinking the Place of Context in Science Education

Rethinking the Place of Context in Science Education

Corrigan, Debbie, Jones, Alister, Buntting, Cathy

2015, Approx. 200 p.

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  • About this book

  • Explores different ways to focus on science education that is relevant for students
  • Reviews three decades of research investigating context-based approaches to science education
  • Presents two interrelated frameworks for what it means to teach and learn science using contexts 
This book contributes to science education by bringing together the key ideas expressed under the banner of context-based teaching and learning approaches, which are considered using two new frameworks: ways of knowing and ways of acting. These two frameworks for what it means to teach and learn science using contexts are similar in structure as they highlight how different continua of ideas interact. In addition, common to both frameworks is the dimension of what is known, ranging from individual concepts to the big ideas of science. However, the ways of knowing framework is about how you know the science, whether it is individual concepts or big ideas, and how this understanding can be represented: as simple applications, or as complex contexts. In contrast, the second framework considers how knowledge is deployed in action. Here, one dimension again represents a continuum of knowledge from individual concepts through to big ideas. The second dimension ranges from technical language at the simplest level, where an individual has learnt the technical language of science but is unable to deploy this to wider social issues, through to the complex notion of scientific literacy. Chapters within the book, in turn, consider the wide range of context-based approaches that exist within science education internationally, introduce the ways of knowing and ways of acting frameworks, and consider how these might be used to guide planning and analysis of context-based science education programmes from the lenses of learning, teaching, curriculum and policy and some large models that are being used internationally.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » context-based science education - learning science in context - out of school science learning - science education - teaching science in context - ways of knowing

Related subjects » Science Education

Table of contents 

​1: Introduction.- 2: The status of context-based approaches to science education.- 3: Technology and science education.- 4: Frameworks for considering context in science education.- 5: Context from a learning perspective.- 6: Context from a teaching perspective.- 7: Context from the perspective of curriculum and policy.- 8: Models of large-scale context-based approaches.- 9: Next steps.

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