Inquiry as a context-based practice – a case study of pre-service teachers’ beliefs and implementation of inquiry in context-based science teaching

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The aim of this study is to provide an understanding of context-based inquiry teaching within a humanistic perspective on science education by studying pre-service teachers' beliefs about inquiry and their implementations of inquiry in their context-based teaching sequences. Therefore, five pre-service teachers enrolled in a university undergraduate course called 'Inquiry-based chemistry education II' (5 ECTS) were involved in an empirical case study. The pre-service teachers' implementations of inquiry were studied from their reports on self-designed context-based inquiry teaching sequences for students age 13-15, and their beliefs by interviewing them after the course. The results indicate that the most frequent aspects of inquiry, which were implemented, were that inquiry (i) includes a context, (ii) is a way to act, (iii) is a way to think, and (iv) includes source/information evaluation and argumentation. The pre-service teachers' beliefs about inquiry were shown to reflect manifold aspects of inquiry, such as the difficulty in explaining it. However, this difficulty in encapsulating inquiry into a clear-cut definition is not necessarily an impediment to inquiry-based teaching. Furthermore, inquiry is inherently context-bound, and context-based teaching requires extra-situational knowledge from the context and not only declarative knowledge from science. This should be considered to support effective professional development.
TidskriftInternational Journal of Science Education
Sidor (från-till)1977-1998
Antal sidor22
StatusPublicerad - 20 aug 2019
MoE-publikationstypA1 Tidskriftsartikel-refererad


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