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The Language of Science Education

An Expanded Glossary of Key Terms and Concepts in Science Teaching and Learning

  • William F. McComas

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
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About this book

Introduction

The Language of Science Education: An Expanded Glossary of Key Terms and Concepts in Science Teaching and Learning is written expressly for science education professionals and students of science education to provide the foundation for a shared vocabulary of the field of science teaching and learning. Science education is a part of education studies but has developed a unique vocabulary that is occasionally at odds with the ways some terms are commonly used both in the field of education and in general conversation. Therefore, understanding the specific way that terms are used within science education is vital for those who wish to understand the existing literature or make contributions to it. The Language of Science Education provides definitions for 100 unique terms, but when considering the related terms that are also defined as they relate to the targeted words, almost 150 words are represented in the book. For instance, “laboratory instruction” is accompanied by definitions for openness, wet lab, dry lab, virtual lab and cookbook lab. Each key term is defined both with a short entry designed to provide immediate access following by a more extensive discussion, with extensive references and examples where appropriate. Experienced readers will recognize the majority of terms included, but the developing discipline of science education demands the consideration of new words. For example, the term blended science is offered as a better descriptor for interdisciplinary science and make a distinction between project-based and problem-based instruction. Even a definition for science education is included. The Language of Science Education is designed as a reference book but many readers may find it useful and enlightening to read it as if it were a series of very short stories.

Keywords

Definitions Science Education Vocabulary

Editors and affiliations

  • William F. McComas
    • 1
  1. 1.Parks Family Professor of Science EducationUniversity of ArkansasFayettevilleUSA

Bibliographic information