Developing middle school students' interest in learning science and geology through slowmation

Mills, Reece, Tomas, Louisa, Whiteford, Chrystal, and Lewthwaite, Brian (2020) Developing middle school students' interest in learning science and geology through slowmation. Research in Science Education, 50 (4). pp. 1501-1520.

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Given that interest is associated with learning in educational research, understanding how its development can be supported in different learning contexts represents an important line of inquiry. In this study, we investigate the influence of the slowmation construction process on middle school students’ interest in learning science and geology. Both quantitative and qualitative data were generated from four classes of ninth-grade students; two classes participated in the construction of a slowmation about tectonic plate boundaries (n = 52) and two classes experienced a state-mandated programme of instruction (n = 43). The students completed the Student Interest in Learning Science Survey, a Likert-style instrument, which examined their level of situational and individual interest prior to their participation in the study and upon their completion of the construction task or mandated instruction. Statistical analyses of these data revealed that the students who constructed a slowmation demonstrated significant increases in their interest in learning science and geology, while the students who experienced regular classroom instruction demonstrated lower levels of interest by the end of the study. Interview data obtained from students who constructed a slowmation suggest that the construction process afforded opportunities to work and learn in active, hands-on and collaborative ways; to exercise creativity; and to engage with technology. Importantly, increases in students’ interest appeared to emerge from the early attentional and affective stages of their interest development, rather than through a meaningful connection to the geological subject matter, which has theoretical implications for interest research in learning contexts.

Item ID: 53864
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1573-1898
Keywords: geology education; situational interest; individual interest; digital media slowmation
Copyright Information: © Springer Nature B.V. 2018
Date Deposited: 10 Jul 2018 23:19
FoR Codes: 39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390113 Science, technology and engineering curriculum and pedagogy @ 50%
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390306 Secondary education @ 50%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930201 Pedagogy @ 50%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930102 Learner and Learning Processes @ 50%
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