Student understanding and application of science concepts in the context of an integrated curriculum setting

Grady Venville, L. Rennie, J. Wallace

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The integration of science with other disciplines is a popular curriculumreform strategy. However, there is an absence of empirical research into how studentsunderstand and apply science concepts in integrated curricula settings. This case studyfocuses on three pairs of Year 9 students and their understanding and application of theconcepts of electrical circuit and current in the construction of a solar-powered boat. Ourresults revealed some limited evidence of students applying formal science knowledgeto complete their projects and bridge the discipline boundaries. However, students did notalways hold and use the accepted scientific view of electrical current as they undertook theirprojects. We conclude that integrated approaches to teaching science may be appropriateto engage students in using scientific knowledge as a tool to solve real-world problems, butraise some questions as to whether they improve conceptual understanding.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449-475
JournalInternational Journal of Science and Mathematics Education
Volume1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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