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Sustainable Language Support Practices in Science Education

Book Description

The effective communication of science through language, including reading, writing, listening, speaking, and visual representation, is an essential part of scientific learning, understanding, and practice. Language is the medium by which scientific reasoning occurs, whether be it formal language or symbolic representations of scientific phenomena. Sustainable Language Support Practices in Science Education: Technologies and Solutions presents cases on the results of a study done in Australia on first-year university students and the impact of new techniques of language acquisition on science education. The project covered biology, chemistry, and physics. Nearly 3,400 students were involved in the project, drawn from the University of Canberra, the University of Technology-Sydney, the University of Sydney, the University of Tasmania, and the University of Newcastle in Australia. This book serves as the latest research available on meta-cognitive assessment and language needs for a diverse student body; it is a vital resource for academics and practitioners designing and implementing science education around the world today.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Editorial Advisory Board and List of Reviewers
    1. Editorial Advisory Board
  5. Foreword
  6. Preface
    1. Background
    2. Project Aims
    3. Science Background of Students
    4. The Project Methodology
    5. Target Audience
    6. Description of Each Chapter
    7. Conclusion
  7. Acknowledgment
  8. Chapter 1: Language Problems of First Year Science Students
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. Analysis of Questionnaire Data
    4. Implications
    5. Literature Review: The Role of Language in Science
    6. Changed Teaching Practices Regarding the Use of Language
    7. Building on Existing Knowledge of Pedagogical Advances
    8. Contribution of Previous Research to the Project
    9. Methods of Addressing Difficulties in the Language of Science
    10. Conclusion
  9. Chapter 2: Language Support Strategies in First Year Chemistry
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. Language Difficulty Surveys and Class Observations
    4. Language Methods Employed to Support Learning in First Year Chemistry
    5. Online Activities
    6. Design of Online Quizzes
    7. Data Analysis
    8. In Class Activities
    9. Student Response Systems (Clickers)
    10. Student-Centred, Inquiry Based Approach to Lectures and Tutorials
    11. Conclusion
    12. Appendix A
    13. Appendix B: Administered at the University of Sydney as an Intervention in the Discipline of Chemistry
    14. Appendix C: Language Difficulty Surveys Used in the Chemistry Discipline
  10. Chapter 3: First Year Chemistry Language Support at the University of Tasmania
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. Language Methods Employed to Support Learning in First Year Chemistry
    4. Results of Implementation at the University of Tasmania
    5. CONCLUSION
    6. Appendix A: Examples of VotApedia Concept Questions Administered at the University of Tasmania in Chemistry
    7. Appendix B: Examples of Pre-lecture or Tutorial Online Quizzes Used at the University of Tasmania in Chemistry
    8. Appendix C: Hot Potato Exercises for Chemistry
  11. Chapter 4: Language Focus for Genetics and Molecular Biology Students
    1. ABSTRACT
    2. INTRODUCTION
    3. LANGUAGE METHODS EMPLOYED TO SUPPORT LEARNING IN GENETICS
    4. IMPACT OF SCIENTIFIC LANGUAGE INTERVENTION ON STUDENT LEARNING IN GENETICS
    5. ASSESSING LANGUAGE CAPACITY IN EXPERIENCED SCIENCE STUDENTS: A FOCUS ON THE 2008-2009 COHORT
    6. ANALYSIS OF LANGUAGE AND NON-LANGUAGE FACTORS THAT CONTRIBUTE TO STUDENT PERFORMANCE IN GENETICS
    7. ROLE OF MOTIVATION
    8. CONCLUSION
  12. Chapter 5: Evaluating a Genetics Concept Inventory
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. Survey Procedures and Student Profile
    4. Experimental Techniques Applied to Encourage Language Learning
    5. Quantitative Measures and Statistical Analysis
    6. Statistical Evaluation of UCGenCI
    7. Conclusion
  13. Chapter 6: Language Support for First Year Human Physiology and Biology
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. Methods Employed to Support Learning in Human Physiology
    4. Impact on Student Performance in Human Physiology
    5. Methods Employed to Support Learning in Biology
    6. Impact of Changes on Student Learning in Biology
    7. Conclusion
    8. Appendix A: Test 1 and 2 of the Language Difficulty Surveys Used at the University of Newcastle in Semester 2, 2009
    9. Appendix B: VotApedia Questions Used in Biology 1002 at the University of Newcastle
    10. Appendix C: Tutorial Language Exercises
  14. Chapter 7: The Benefits of Teaching Students the Language of Physics
    1. Abstract
    2. INTRODUCTION
    3. Language in Physics
    4. Language and Science Education
    5. Changed Teaching Practices Regarding the Use of Language
    6. Building on Existing Knowledge of Pedagogical Advances
    7. Educational Context and Interventions
    8. Do Students Really Have a Language Problem?
    9. Results
    10. FUTURE RESEARCH DIRECTIONS
    11. Conclusion
    12. Appendix A: Language Difficulty Survey Used at the University of Technology, Sydney Australia in Semester One 2008 as a Pre-Intervention Assessment
    13. Appendix B: Physics Concept Survey Administered at the University of Technology, Sydney
  15. Chapter 8: Clickers in a First Statistics Course
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. Educational Setting
    4. Experiment Design: Factors
    5. Discussion
    6. Appendix A: Statistics Concept Inventory (Stone et al., 2003)
    7. Appendix B: Clicker Questions (Moore, 2010)
    8. Appendix C: Language Questions
  16. Chapter 9: A Successful Collaboration Between Language Arts and Science
    1. Abstract
    2. Introduction
    3. This Project Specifically Aimed to
  17. Compilation of References
  18. About the Contributors