What is the students' worldview?
Learning is concerned with ideas, their structure, and the evidence for them. It is not simply the acquisition of correct responses, a verbal repertoire or a set of behaviors. Students' reading and cultural assumptions inform the texts they read and the lectures they hear.There is a long-standing debate in the science education community between those who believe that students come in to the classroom with a theory about the subject which is different from that described by the teacher and found in their textbooks and those who feel that students' knowledge consists of isolated structures called phenomenological primitives. Thomas Kuhn (The structure of scientific revolutions. 2nd rev. edition. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1962/1970) and Paul Feyerabend (Against method. 3rd edition. Verso, New York, 1962) each independently introduced the idea of incommensurability to the philosophy of science. There can be incommensurability between the theory of the phenomena perceived by the student and the accepted scientific theory.Kalman et al. (Am J Phys 72:715–717, 2004) developed a technique based upon developing conceptual conflict through in-class collaborative group exercises with a follow-up of a writing exercise (critique) in which students examined the alternatives produced in a collaborative group exercise.
Kalman, C. S. (2018). What is the students' worldview?, in Successful science and engineering teaching, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 69-87.
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