, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp 703-718

Extending the purposes of science education: addressing violence within socio-economic disadvantaged communities

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Abstract

Current discourses about science education show a wide concern towards humanisation and a more socio-cultural perspective of school science. They suggest that science education can serve diverse purposes and be responsive to social and environmental situations we currently face. However, these discourses and social approaches to science education tend to focus on global issues. They do not respond to the immediate needs and local context of some communities. I discuss in this paper why the purposes of science education need to be extended to respond to the local issue of violence. For this, I present a case study with a group of 38 students from a poor population in Bogotá, Colombia, located in one of the suburbs with highest levels of crime in the city. I examine the ways that science education contributes to and embodies its own forms of violence and explore how a new approach to science education could contribute to break the cycle of violence.

Lead Editor: Matthew Weinstein