Resources for Science Learning: Tools, Tasks, and Environment

  • Peter W. HewsonEmail author


This article addresses the question of how science learning can be improved. It recognizes that, while learners themselves are responsible for their own learning, the quality of this learning is greatly influenced when appropriate resources are available to learners. These resources are provided through a partnership between teachers and learners. Three different types of resource are discussed. Tools, in the form of computer tools and conceptual tools, make tasks easier and allow learners to undertake tasks they would not otherwise be able to do. Tasks can facilitate effective learning by creating effective spaces for learners to work in, embodying key aspects of the disciplines of science, providing effective and authentic opportunities for learners to learn, and facilitating a dialogue between learners’ ideas and their experiences of the natural world. Environment – the ecology in which learning happens – provides three sources of information through the human, social, and conceptual worlds. When key aspects of these worlds are manifested in the environment, they scaffold the learning of science content, the nature of science, and the learning process itself, all of which are required for the deep understanding of science that constitutes improved science learning.


environment resources science learning tasks tools 


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Copyright information

© National Science Council, Taiwan 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Curriculum and InstructionUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonU.S.A.

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