Regional Queensland parents' views of science education: some unexpected perceptions

Boon, Helen J. (2012) Regional Queensland parents' views of science education: some unexpected perceptions. Australian Educational Researcher, 39 (1). pp. 17-43.

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Low post-compulsory science enrolments for secondary students have been a growing concern across the Western world. Research has examined factors relating to science curricula and students' attitudes about science, but parental views of science education remain largely unexplored in Australia. Because parents have a strong role in shaping their children's subject selection and career choices, in this pilot study we sought to explore parental attitudes about science education. Results from focus interviews and a survey of 132 Indigenous and non-Indigenous parents demonstrated, for the first time, that regional parents believe the study of society and the environment (SOSE) is a better preparation than science for their children's understanding of socio-scientific issues. Most parents were unclear as to the nature of scientific literacy, believing science as it is currently taught in primary schools, not to be relevant to their children's needs. Structural equation modelling using the survey data confirmed prior researchers' claims and extended ideas about the likely interplay of parental attitudes and beliefs influencing their support of science study for their children. The results highlight an urgent need to explore such parental views across Australia.

Item ID: 19485
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2210-5328
Keywords: science education, parents, scientific literacy, SEM
Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2012 01:21
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators @ 25%
13 EDUCATION > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy @ 50%
13 EDUCATION > 1399 Other Education > 139999 Education not elsewhere classified @ 25%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9303 Curriculum > 930302 Syllabus and Curriculum Development @ 50%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930202 Teacher and Instructor Development @ 50%
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