When Scientific Knowledge, Daily Life Experience, Epistemological and Social Considerations Intersect: Students’ Argumentation in Group Discussions on a Socio-scientific Issue
ABSTRACT Socio-scientific issues in class have been proposed in an effort to democratise science in society. A micro-ethnographic approach
has been used to explore how students elaborate arguments on a socio-scientific controversy in the context of small group
discussions. Several processes of group argumentation have been identified. Students’ arguments were elaborated from scientific
data, common ideas and epistemological and strategic considerations. Students’ social interactions influenced the patterns
of argumentation elaborated within the group discussions. Implications of this study for the teaching of socio-scientific
issues in class are discussed.
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ABSTRACT: Socioscientific issues encompass social dilemmas with conceptual or technological links to science. The process of resolving these issues is best characterized by informal reasoning which describes the generation and evaluation of positions in response to complex situations. This article presents a critical review of research related to informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues. The findings reviewed address (a) socioscientific argumentation; (b) relationships between nature of science conceptualizations and socioscientific decision making; (c) the evaluation of information pertaining to socioscientific issues, including student ideas about what counts as evidence; and (d) the influence of an individual's conceptual understanding on his or her informal reasoning. This synthesis of the current state of socioscientific issue research provides a comprehensive framework from which future research can be motivated and decisions about the design and implementation of socioscientific curricula can be made. The implications for future research and classroom applications are discussed. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Res Sci Teach 41: 513–536, 2004Journal of Research in Science Teaching 04/2004; 41(5):513 - 536. · 2.64 Impact Factor
- Cognition and Instruction 11/1993; 11(3-4):189-196. · 0.93 Impact Factor
Chapter: The uses of argumentCambridge University Press.