Session S45b (Tuesday, 2pm, Wartik 106)

P528: Transforming science teachers’ careers: A partnership to improve students’ scientific reasoning skills

Mark Cracolice (University of Montana, USA), Dave Jones (Big Sky High School, USA)

A partnership between a group of high school chemistry teachers and a university chemistry department was formed with the goal of teaching teachers how to improve students’ scientific reasoning abilities; that is, their ability to think. Two two-week summer workshops were designed to help teachers (a) learn to use an inquiry approach to high school chemistry teaching, (b) develop novel instructional materials based on the BSCS 5E Instructional Model, (c) identify new sources of data for inquiry-based lessons, (d) learn how to facilitate the development of students’ reasoning skills, and (e) measure the improvement in students’ skills. The evidence indicates that teachers improved in content knowledge, the quality of organization of their content knowledge, and pedagogical knowledge. The change in the teachers’ abilities led to greater improvements in students’ reasoning skills.


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