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Pathways to Scientific Teaching, Chapter 7c of 7: Designing research to investigate student learning

The call for evidence-based research in education has accelerated in recent years, accompanied by the need to examine the nature of inquiry into student learning. Donovan and Pellegrino (2003) make a strong appeal to improve the quality of classroom research, stating that “education needs high-quality research if the results are to be reliable for the purposes of improving practice”. The challenge for a researcher in the classroom is, how can one generate valid and reliable data to address a hypothesis when the research venue is variable and data are messy? In order to address this question, educators must establish standard methods and experimental designs for research that can be applied in many classroom settings. Our goal in this article is to analyze several different experimental designs and evaluate the validity of each approach in the context of an example research question.
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Resource Group "Pathways to Scientific Teaching" is based on a series of two-page articles published in "Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment" from August 2004 to June 2006 that illustrated effective instructional methods to help students gain conceptual understanding in ecology (Diane Ebert-May and Janet Hodder, 2008).

This installment of the Pathways to Scientific Teaching series describes one or more instructional strategies that use scientific papers to teach selected concepts. While specific journal articles are used in demonstrating these strategies, we would like to emphasize that each activity in the Pathways series has been designed for use with any scientific article on a similar topic, and not just the example shown here.

Note that in addition to undergraduate faculty, many high school teachers can use these articles as well in their biology courses.
Resource Group Link http://ecoed.esa.org/index.php?P=AdvancedSearch&Q=Y&FK=%22Pathways+to...
Primary or BEN resource type
Secondary resource type
Discipline Specific Core Concepts
Life science discipline (subject)
Keywords phytoremediation, transgenic plants, pollution, experimental design, guiding questions
Audience
Intended End User Role
Language
Educational Language
Pedagogical Use Description Faculty research goal: Use both observational and empirical approaches to answer a question about student learning.

This installment of the Pathways to Scientific Teaching series describes one or more instructional strategies that use scientific papers to teach selected concepts. While specific journal articles are used in demonstrating these strategies, we would like to emphasize that each activity in the Pathways series has been designed for use with any scientific article on a similar topic, and not just the example shown here.

Note that in addition to undergraduate faculty, many high school teachers can use these articles as well in their biology courses.
Primary Author Controlled Name
Primary Author Affiliation Michigan State University
Primary Author email ebertmay@msu.edu
Secondary Author Name(s) Janet M Batzli 2, and Everett P Weber 1
Secondary Author Affiliation(s) 1 Michigan State University, 2 University of Wisconsin
Rights Copyright 2008, the Ecological Society of America
Date Of Record Submission 2011-12-05

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