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Title: Open-ended science inquiry in lower secondary school: Are students' learning needs being met?
Contributor(s): Whannell, Robert  (author)orcid ; Quinn, Frances  (author)orcid ; Taylor, Subhashni  (author)orcid ; Harris, Katherine (author); Cornish, Scott (author); Sharma, Manjula (author)
Publication Date: 2018
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Abstract: Australian science curricula have promoted the use of investigations that allow secondary students to engage deeply with the methods of scientific inquiry, through student-directed, open-ended investigations over an extended duration. This study presents the analysis of data relating to the frequency of completion and attitudes towards long investigations from 54 lower secondary school students and 46 secondary school science teachers from five schools in New South Wales. It was concluded that there is limited use of longer investigations that would allow students to develop the integrated set of skills necessary to engage with the full scientific investigative process. While student attitudes towards investigations in general were very positive, the attitudes towards long investigations were markedly more negative, with a lack of enjoyment and interest reported. The necessity for, and scaffolding of, long investigations is discussed.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Teaching Science, 64(1), p. 37-45
Publisher: Australian Science Teachers Association
Place of Publication: Australia
ISSN: 1839-2946
Field of Research (FOR): 130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
Other Links:;dn=420222158821647;res=IELHSS
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article
School of Education

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