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Knowledge, Value and Personal experience: Upper secondary students' resources of supporting reasons when arguing socioscientific issues
Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences, Department of Geography and Tourism. (SMEER)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4306-8278
2011 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis focuses on upper secondary students’ use of resources in their supporting reasons when arguing socioscientific issues (SSIs). The skills of argumentation have been emphasized in science education during the past decades and SSIs are proven a good context for learners to enhance skills of argumentation and achieve the goal of scientific literacy. Research has shown that supporting reasons from various resources are embedded in students’ argumentation on SSIs, and also that multi-perspective involvement in reasoning is important for the quality of argumentation. To explore the reasons used by students in arguing about SSIs in this thesis, the SEE-SEP model was adopted as an analytical framework. The SEE-SEP model covers the six subject areas of sociology/culture, economy, environment/ecology, science, ethics/morality and policy, which are connected to the three aspects of knowledge, value and personal experience. Two studies covering four SSIs (global warming, GMO, nuclear power and consumption) explore how students construct arguments on one SSI topic chosen by them. In paper I, I investigated students’ use of resources in their informal argumentation and to what extent students made use of knowledge. The results showed that students used value to a larger extent (67%) than knowledge (27%). I also found that the distribution of supporting reasons generated by students varied from the different SSIs. In paper II, I explored students’ use of resources in relation to students’ study background (science majors and social-science majors) and gender. The results showed that social-science majors and females generated more numbers of reasons and also showed a larger amount of multi-disciplinary resources in their supporting reasons. From the findings of this thesis, the SEE-SEP model was established as a suitable model used to analyze students’ resources of supporting reasons while arguing about SSIs. Furthermore, the potential for applying the SEE-SEP model in teachers’ SSI-teaching and students’ SSI-learning is suggested. The implications to research and teaching are also discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet , 2011. , p. 36
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2011:8
Series
Studies in Science and Technology Education, ISSN 1652-5051 ; 34
Keywords [en]
socioscientific issues, informal agumentation, SEE-SEP model
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-6815ISBN: 978-91-7063-340-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-6815DiVA, id: diva2:393517
Presentation
2011-03-11, 11D 227, Karlstads universitet, Universitetsgatan 1, Karlstad, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2011-02-22 Created: 2011-01-26 Last updated: 2015-04-17Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Using the SEE-SEP model to analyse upper secondary students' use of supporting reasons in arguing socioscientific issues
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Using the SEE-SEP model to analyse upper secondary students' use of supporting reasons in arguing socioscientific issues
2012 (English)In: Journal of Science Education and Technology, ISSN 1059-0145, E-ISSN 1573-1839, Vol. 21, no 3, p. 342-352Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

To achieve the goal of scientific literacy, the skills of argumentation have been emphasized in science education during the past decades. But the extent to which students can apply scientific knowledge to their argumentation is still unclear. The purpose of this study was to analyse 80 Swedish upper secondary students' informal argumentation on four socioscientific issues (SSIs) to explore students' use of supporting reasons and to what extent students used scientific knowledge in their arguments. Eighty upper secondary students were asked to express their opinions on one SSI topic they chose through written reports. The four SSIs in this study include global warming, genetically modified organisms (GMO), nuclear power, and consumption. To analyse students' supporting reasons from a holistic view, we used the SEE-SEP model, which links the six subject areas of sociology/culture (So), environment (En), economy (Ec), science (Sc), ethics/morality (Et) and policy (Po) connecting with three aspects, and (KVP). The results showed that students used value to a greater extent (67%) than they did scientific knowledge (27%) for all four SSI topics. According to the SEE-SEP model, the distribution of supporting reasons generated by students differed among the SSI topics. Also, some alternative concepts were disclosed in students' arguments. The implications for research and education are discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2012
Keywords
Socioscientific issues; Informal argumentation; Scientific literacy; Scientific knowledge; The SEE-SEP model; Holistic view
National Category
Biological Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-7091 (URN)10.1007/s10956-011-9328-x (DOI)000303866300003 ()
Available from: 2011-02-21 Created: 2011-02-21 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved
2. The Relationship of Discipline Background to Upper Secondary Students´ Argumentation on Socioscientific Issues
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Relationship of Discipline Background to Upper Secondary Students´ Argumentation on Socioscientific Issues
2014 (English)In: Research in science education, ISSN 0157-244X, E-ISSN 1573-1898, Vol. 44, no 4, p. 581-601Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In the present STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)-driven society, socioscientific issues (SSI) have become a focus globally and SSI research has grown into an important area of study in science education. Since students attending the social and science programs have a different focus in their studies and research has shown that students attending a science program are less familiar with argumentation practice, we make a comparison of the supporting reasons social science and science majors use in arguing different SSI with the goal to provide important information for pedagogical decisions about curriculum and instruction. As an analytical framework, a model termed SEE-SEP covering three aspects (of knowledge, value, and experiences) and six subject areas (of sociology/culture, economy, environment/ecology, science, ethics/morality, and policy) was adopted to analyze students’ justifications. A total of 208 upper secondary students (105 social science majors and 103 science majors) from Sweden were invited to justify and expound their arguments on four SSI including global warming, genetically modified organisms (GMO), nuclear power, and consumer consumption. The results showed that the social science majors generated more justifications than the science majors, the aspect of value was used most in students’ argumentation regardless of students’ discipline background, and justifications from the subject area of science were most often presented in nuclear power and GMO issues. We conclude by arguing that engaging teachers from different subjects to cooperate when teaching argumentation on SSI could be of great value and provide students from both social science and science programs the best possible conditions in which to develop argumentation skills.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2014
Keywords
Argumentation, Socioscientific issues, Resources of justifications, Discipline background, The SEE-SEP model
National Category
Biological Sciences Educational Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-7092 (URN)10.1007/s11165-013-9394-6 (DOI)000339348500004 ()
Note

This article was part of a licentiate and was included as manuscript.

Available from: 2011-02-21 Created: 2011-02-21 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved

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