Advertisement

Journal of Science Teacher Education

, Volume 23, Issue 8, pp 847–866 | Cite as

Argument as Professional Development: Impacting Teacher Knowledge and Beliefs About Science

  • Kent J. CrippenEmail author
Article

Abstract

Using a case study method, the experiences of a group of high school science teachers participating in a unique professional development method involving an argue-to-learn intervention were examined. The participants (N = 42) represented 25 different high schools from a large urban school district in the southwestern United States. Data sources included a multiple-choice science content test and artifacts from a capstone argument project. Findings indicate although it was intended for the curriculum to be a robust and sufficient collection of evidence, participant groups were more likely to use the Web to find unique evidence than to they were to use the provided materials. Content knowledge increased, but an issue with teacher conceptions of primary data was identified, as none of the participants chose to use any of their experimental results in their final arguments. The results of this study reinforce multiple calls for science curricula that engage students (including teachers as students) in the manipulation and questioning of authentic data as a means to better understanding complex socioscientific issues and the nature of science.

Keywords

Argumentation Professional development Nature of science 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Funding for this project was provided by the State of Nevada Department of Education under Title II, part B of the United States Department of Education’s Math and Science Partnership (MSP) program.

References

  1. Anderson, S. W., & Libarkin, J. C. (2006). The Geoscience Concept Inventory. Retrieved April, 27, 2007, from http://newton.bhsu.edu/eps/gci.html.
  2. Andriessen, J. (2006). Arguing to learn. In K. Sawyer (Ed.), Handbook of the learning sciences (pp. 443–459). Cambridge: Cambridge University press.Google Scholar
  3. Avraamidou, L., & Zembal-Saul, C. (2005). Giving priority to evidence in science teaching: A first-year elementary teacher’s specialized practices and knowledge. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 42(9), 965–998.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bell, P., & Linn, M. C. (2000). Scientific arguments as learning artifacts: Designing for learning from the web with KIE. International Journal of Science Education, 22(8), 797–817.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Berland, L. K., & McNeill, K. L. (2010). A learning progression for scientific argumentation: Understanding student work and designing supportive instructional contexts. Science Education, 94(5), 765–793.Google Scholar
  6. Bricker, L. A., & Bell, P. (2008). Argumentation from science studies and the learning sciences and their implications for the practices of science education. Science Education, 92(3), 473–498.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cavagnetto, A. R. (2010). Argument to foster scientific literacy. Review of Educational Research, 80(3), 336–371.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Chinn, C. A. (2006). Learning to argue. In A. M. O’Donnell, C. E. Hmelo-Silver, & G. Erkens (Eds.), Collaborative learning, reasoning, and technology. Mahawah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  9. Choi, A., Notebaert, A., Diaz, J., & Hand, B. (2010). Examining arguments generated by year 5, 7, and 10 students in science classrooms. Research in Science Education, 40(2), 149–169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Creswell, J. W. (1997). Qualitative inquiry and research design: Choosing among five traditions (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage.Google Scholar
  11. Crippen, K. J., Biesenger, K. D., & Ebert, E. E. (2010). Using professional development to achieve classroom reform and science proficiency: An urban success story from Southern Nevada USA. Professional Development in Education, 36(4), 637–661.Google Scholar
  12. Cross, D., Taasoobshirazi, G., Hendricks, S., & Hickey, D. T. (2008). Argumentation: A strategy for improving achievement and revealing scientific identities. International Journal of Science Education, 30(6), 837–861.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Driver, R., Newton, P., & Osborne, J. (2000). Establishing the norms of scientific argumentation in classrooms. Science Education, 84, 287–312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Erduran, S., & Jimenez-Aleixandre, M.-P. (Eds.). (2007). Argumentation in Science Education. Berlin: Springer.Google Scholar
  15. Erduran, S., Simon, S., & Osborne, J. (2004). TAPping into argumentation: Developments in the application of Toulmin’s argumentation pattern for studying science discourse. Science Education, 88(6), 915–933.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Evans, D. L., & Hestenes, D. (2001, 2001). The concept of the concept inventory assessment instrument. Paper presented at the Frontiers in Education Conference, 2001. 31st Annual, Reno, NV.Google Scholar
  17. ExamGen (2007). ExamGen: Test item databases for today’s teachers. Retrieved June, 14, 2007, from http://www.examgen.com/.
  18. Garet, M. S., Porter, A. C., Dismone, L., Birman, B. F., & Yoon, K. S. (2001). What makes professional development effective? Results from a national sample of teachers. American Educational Research Journal, 38(4), 915–945.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gowin, B. D., & Alvarez, M. C. (2005). The art of educating with V diagrams. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  20. Hand, B., & Keys, C. W. (1999). Inquiry investigation: A new approach to laboratory reports. The Science Teacher(April), 27–29.Google Scholar
  21. Keller, J. (2006). Eliciting and addressing student misconceptions regarding the atmospheric greenhouse effect and radiative equilibrium. Arizona: University of Arizona.Google Scholar
  22. Kuhn, T. S. (1996). The structure of the scientific revolution (3rd ed.). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  23. Kuhn, L., & Reiser, B. (2006). Structuring activities to foster argumentative discourse. Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association, San Francisco, CA.Google Scholar
  24. Libarkin, J. C., & Anderson, S. W. (2005). Assessment of learning in entry-level geoscience courses: Results from the Geoscience Concept Inventory. Journal of Geoscience Education, 53(4), 394–401.Google Scholar
  25. Lincoln, Y., & Guba, E. (1985). Naturalistic inquiry. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  26. Linn, M. C., Bell, P., & Davis, E. A. (2005). Internet environments for science education. London: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  27. Loucks-Horsley, S., & Matsumoto, C. (1999). Research on professional development for teachers of mathematics and science: The state of the scene. School Science and Mathematics, 99(5), 258–271.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Luft, J. A. (2001). Changing inquiry practices and beliefs: The impact of an inquiry-based professional development programme on beginning and experienced secondary science teachers. International Journal of Science Education, 23(5), 517–534.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. McNeill, K. L., Lizotte, D. J., Krajcik, J., & Marx, R. W. (2006). Supporting students’ construction of scientific explanations by fading scaffolds in instructional materials. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 15(2), 153–191.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. NRC. (1996). National science education standards. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  31. NRC. (2000). Inquiry and the national science education standards: A guide for teaching and learning. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  32. Osborne, J., Erduran, S., & Simon, S. (2004). Enhancing the quality of argumentation in school science. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 41(10), 994–1020.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Passmore, C. M. (2007). Argumentation in modeling classrooms. Paper presented at the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, New Orleans, LA.Google Scholar
  34. Pew (2007). Climate Change 101: Understanding and Responding to Global Climate Change. Retrieved 12/5, 2010, from http://www.pewclimate.org/global-warming-basics/climate_change_101.
  35. Quintana, C., Reiser, B. J., Davis, E. A., Krajcik, J., Fretz, E., Duncan, R. G., et al. (2004). A scaffolding design framework for software to support science inquiry. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 13(3), 337–386.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Roehrig, G. H., & Luft, J. A. (2004). Constraints experienced by beginning secondary science teachers in implementing scientific inquiry lessons. International Journal of Science Education, 26(1), 3–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Roth, W.-M., & McGinn, M. K. (1998). Inscriptions: Toward a theory of representing as social practice. Review of Educational Research, 68(1), 35–59.Google Scholar
  38. Sadler, T. D. (2004). Informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues: A critical review of research. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 41(5), 513–536.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Sadler, T. D. (2006). Promoting discourse and argumentation in science teacher education. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 17(4), 323–346.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Sadler, T. D., Chambers, W. F., & Zeidler, D. L. (2004). Student conceptualizations of the nature of science in response to a socioscientific issue. International Journal of Science Education, 26(4), 387–409.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Sadler, T. D., & Zeidler, D. L. (2005a). Patterns of informal reasoning in the context of socioscientific decision making. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 42(1), 112–138.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Sadler, T. D., & Zeidler, D. L. (2005b). The significance of content knowledge for informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues: Applying genetics knowledge to genetic engineering issues. Science Education, 89(1), 71–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Sampson, V., & Clark, D. B. (2008). Assessment of the ways students generate arguments in science education: Current perspectives and recommendations for future directions. Science Education, 92(3), 447–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Sandoval, W. A. (2005). Understanding students’ practical epistemologies and their influence on learning through inquiry. Science Education, 89(4), 634–656.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Sandoval, W. A., & Millwood, K. A. (2005). The quality of students’ use of evidence in written scientific explanations. Cognition and Instruction, 23(1), 23–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Schwarz, B., & Glassner, A. (2003). The blind and the paralytic: Supporting argumentation in everyday and scientific issues. In J. Andriessen, M. Baker, & D. Suthers (Eds.), Arguing to learn: Confronting cognitions in computer-supported collaborative learning environments (pp. 227–260). Dordrecht: Kluwer.Google Scholar
  47. Schworm, S., & Renkl, A. (2007). Learning argumentation skills through the use of prompts for self-explaining examples. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99(2), 285–296.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Simon, S., Erduran, S., & Osborne, J. (2006). Learning to teach argumentation: Research and development in the science classroom. International Journal of Science Education, 28(2), 235–260.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Singer, J., Lotter, C., Feller, R., & Gates, H. (2011). Exploring a model of situated professional development: Impact on classroom practice. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 22(3), 203–227.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Taylor, J. A., & Dana, T. M. (2003). Secondary school physics teachers’ conceptions of scientific evidence: An exploratory case study. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 40(8), 721–736.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Toth, E. E., Suthers, D. D., & Lesgold, A. M. (2002). Mapping to know: The effects of representational guidance and reflective assessment on scientific inquiry. Science Education, 86(2), 264–286.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Toulmin, S. (1958). The uses of argument. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  53. Toulmin, S., Rieke, R., & Janik, A. (1984). An introduction to reasoning (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  54. Tytler, R., Duggan, S., & Gott, R. (2001). Dimensions of evidence, the public understanding of science and science education. International Journal of Science Education, 23(8), 815–832.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Venville, G. J., & Dawson, V. M. (2010). The impact of a classroom intervention on grade 10 students’ argumentation skills, informal reasoning, and conceptual understanding of science. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 47(8), 952–977.Google Scholar
  56. Voss, J. F., & Means, M. L. (1991). Learning to reason via instruction in argumentation. Learning and Instruction, 1(4), 337–350.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Wallace, C. S., Hand, B., & Yang, E.-M. (2004). The science writing heuristic: Using writing as a tool for learning in the laboratory. In E. W. Saul (Ed.), Crossing borders in literacy and science instruction: Perspectives on theory and practice (pp. 355–368). Newark, DE: International Reading Association.Google Scholar
  58. Zimmerman, C. (2000). The development of scientific reasoning skills. Developmental Review, 20(1), 99–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Association for Science Teacher Education, USA 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Teaching and LearningUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA

Personalised recommendations