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Title: Evaluating the language of different types of explanations in junior high school science texts
Contributor(s): Unsworth, L  (author)
Publication Date: 2001
Open Access: Yes
DOI: 10.1080/09500690010006473
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Abstract: Since 'it is written texts - and the talk around them - that provide the discursive means for the development of the 'higher mental functions' (Wells 1994), the quality of writing and explicit use of texts in teaching warrant close attention. This is not to diminish theimportance of 'hands on' investigations, observation and negotiation of understanding through talk. However, the complementary use of effective texts has a significant role. This article demonstrates how functional language analyses differentiate explanation types andspecify language features relevant to the effectiveness of texts in apprenticing students to the language forms of scientific English. Key differences between different types of explanations are illustrated, then sample text analyses show how language features index variation in explanation quality. Implications are drawn for the selection and use of texts and the role of knowledge about language in teaching critical comprehension and composition of science explanations.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: International Journal of Science Education, 23(6), p. 585-609
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Place of Publication: UK
ISSN: 0950-0693
Field of Research (FOR): 130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article
School of Education

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