Learning science through engaging with its epistemic representational practices
conference contributionposted on 01.01.2011, 00:00 authored by Russell TytlerRussell Tytler, Peter Hubber, A Johansson, P O Wickman, Vaughan PrainVaughan Prain, J Carolan, B Waldrip, R Duschl
This group of papers explores the development of student understanding and application of the discursive tools of science to reason in this subject, as the basis for classroom practices that parallel scientists’ knowledge production practices. We explore how this account of the disciplinary literacies of science can be enabled through effective pedagogies. The papers draw on research from Australia and Sweden that have overlapping agendas and theoretical perspectives including pragmatism (Peirce 1931-58; Dewey 1938/1997), social semiotics (Kress et al. 2001) and socio-cultural perspectives on language and learning (Lemke, 2004). The papers examine the role of language/multimodal representations in generating knowledge claims in science classrooms, the classroom epistemologies that support learning, and assessment practices from this perspective. A large body of conceptual change research has identified trenchant problems in conceptual learning in science, spawning long-standing and ongoing programs to identify pedagogies to address this. By redefining the problem in terms of language and representation, we aim to offer a way forward to support student engagement and learning in science.