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DOI

10.14221/ajte.2004v29n2.1

Abstract

Despite the many developments in the teaching of science, an aspect that continues to be neglected appears to be the character and nature of science (NOS). This is becoming especially important in the light of recent developments in pedagogy, as, for example, more teachers adopt constructivist methodologies and computing technology enables simulations that may blur the lines between models and reality. From the literature, it is known that teachers' modern NOS conceptions, though not a sufficient condition for transmission of modern NOS views, is necessary. In this study, pre-service teachers' NOS conceptions are assessed with an adapted Views of the Nature of Science (VNOS) instrument, originally designed by Lederman, Abd-El-Khalick, Bell, and Schwartz (2002). The modified instrument is an eight-item, open ended questionnaire – designed to elicit descriptive responses to common NOS misconceptions. Responses were analysed into coded categories of ‘informed, ‘uninformed, and ‘ambiguous’. It was found that a significant proportion of teachers possessed uninformed views. Some implications for teaching and teacher education are presented in this paper for discussion.

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Link to publisher version (DOI)

10.14221/ajte.2004v29n2.1