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Science and language teachers' assessment of upper secondary students' socioscientific argumentation
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Geography, Media and Communication. (SMEER)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4306-8278
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Environmental and Life Sciences. (SMEER)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8735-2102
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Engineering and Chemical Sciences. (SMEER)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9521-1737
2016 (English)In: International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, ISSN 1571-0068, E-ISSN 1573-1774, 1-20 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Researchers and policy-makers have recognized the importance of including and promoting socioscientific argumentation in science education worldwide. The Swedish curriculum focuses more than ever on socioscientific issues (SSI) as well. However, teaching socioscientific argumentation is not an easy task for science teachers and one of the more distinguished difficulties is the assessment of students’ performance. In this study, we investigate and compare how science and Swedish language teachers, participating in an SSI-driven project, assessed students’ written argumentation about global warming. Swedish language teachers have a long history of teaching and assessing argumentation and therefore it was of interest to identify possible gaps between the two groups of teachers’ assessment practices. The results showed that the science teachers focused on students’ content knowledge within their subjects, whereas the Swedish language teachers included students’ abilities to select and use content knowledge from reliable reference resources, the structure of the argumentation and the form of language used. Since the Swedish language teachers’ assessment correlated more with previous research about quality in socioscientific argumentation, we suggest that a closer co-operation between the two groups could be beneficial in terms of enhancing the quality of assessment. Moreover, SSI teaching and learning as well as assessment of socioscientific argumentation ought to be included in teacher training programs for both pre- and in-service science teachers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2016. 1-20 p.
Keyword [en]
Assessment, Socioscientific argumentation, Socioscientific issues, Upper secondary teachers
National Category
Educational Sciences Biological Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-45719DOI: 10.1007/s10763-016-9746-6OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-45719DiVA: diva2:957989
Available from: 2016-09-05 Created: 2016-09-05 Last updated: 2017-08-21Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Socioscientific argumentation: Aspects of content and structure
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Socioscientific argumentation: Aspects of content and structure
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Socioscientific argumentation has shown to be a feasible educational framework for promoting citizenship and for cultivating scientific literacy. However, there are several aspects of this educational framework that have been shown to be problematic. Consequently, in this thesis I investigated various aspects of quality of socioscientific argumentation from both an upper secondary student and a teacher perspective. By using students’ written argumentation on socioscientific issues (SSI) I studied how they justified their claims. The results showed that different SSI led students to use different subject areas in their justifications. I also compared science majors with social science majors and found that the number of justifications provided by the students is related to their discipline background. In these two studies, a new content focused analytical framework for analyzing content aspects of socioscientific argumentation, the SEE-SEP model, was used and shown to be suitable for this purpose. However, to ensure that students are able to produce high-quality arguments I suggest that both content and structural aspects need to be considered. As a result of this, I have presented a framework based on research literature and the Swedish curriculum, for analyzing and assessing both these aspects of socioscientific argumentation. Moreover, I investigated how science and language teachers assess students’ socioscientific argumentation and found that the science teachers focused on students’ ability to reproduce content knowledge, whereas language teachers focused on students’ ability to use content knowledge from references, and the structural and linguistic aspects of argumentation.

 

The complexity of teaching socioscientific argumentation makes it difficult to teach and assess comprehensively. In order to promote quality and include both content and structural aspects, I suggest that a co-operation among teachers of different disciplines is beneficial.

Abstract [en]

Socioscientific argumentation has shown to be a feasible educational framework for promoting citizenship and scientific literacy. In this thesis I investigated various aspects of quality of students socioscientific argumentation and how teachers assess this. The results showed that different SSI led students to use different subject areas in their justifications and that the number of justifications provided by the students is related to their discipline background. Moreover, to promote students high-quality arguments I have presented a framework for analyzing and assessing both content and structural aspects. I also investigated how science and language teachers assess students’ socioscientific argumentation and found that the science teachers focused on students’ ability to reproduce content knowledge, whereas language teachers focused on students’ ability to use content knowledge from references, and the structural and linguistic aspects of argumentation. The complexity of teaching socioscientific argumentation makes it difficult to teach and assess comprehensively. In order to promote quality and include both content and structural aspects, I suggest that a co-operation among teachers of different disciplines is beneficial.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2015. 73 p.
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2015:26
Keyword
Socioscientific argumentation, socioscientific issues, argumentation
National Category
Other Biological Topics Didactics Pedagogical Work
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-35869 (URN)978-91-7063-641-7 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-06-05, 9C203, Nyquistsalen, Karlstads universitet, Karlstad, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

Article IV was in manuscript form at the time of the thesis defense and has been published afterwards.

Available from: 2015-05-20 Created: 2015-04-17 Last updated: 2017-08-21Bibliographically approved

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Publisher's full texthttp://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10763-016-9746-6

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