Junior secondary school students' conceptions about plate tectonics

Mills, Reece, Tomas, Louisa, and Lewthwaite, Brian (2017) Junior secondary school students' conceptions about plate tectonics. International Research in Geographical and Environmental Education, 26 (4). pp. 297-310.

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Abstract

There are ongoing calls for research that identifies students' conceptions about geographical phenomena. In response, this study investigates junior secondary school students' (N=95) conceptions about plate tectonics. Student response data was generated from semi-structured interviews-about-instances and a two-tiered multiple-choice test instrument developed and validated by the researchers. There were three main findings: (1) students held many alternative conceptions about plate tectonics, most of which have not been reported in previous research; (2) students' alternative conceptions most commonly concerned the formation of landforms at tectonic plate boundaries; and (3) students were especially confused about the cause of subduction at an oceanic-continental convergent plate boundary. The findings of this study can assist geography teachers and researchers to develop innovative pedagogies that consider students' pre instructional alternative conceptions and promote conceptual change learning.

Item ID: 43668
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: plate tectonics; geography; alternative conceptions; conceptual change; mixed methods
ISSN: 1747-7611
Funders: Queensland College of Teachers
Date Deposited: 14 Apr 2016 03:38
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy @ 100%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930102 Learner and Learning Processes @ 50%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930103 Learner Development @ 50%
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