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Transforming Undergraduate Science Teaching

Social Constructivist Perspectives


Peter Taylor, Penny J. Gilmer and Kenneth Tobin

This book comes at a time when epistemological reform is sweeping through the global community of science education. Since the 1970s, the theories of knowing embodied in the teaching activities of school science teachers have been undergoing a major transformation toward more learner-sensitive standpoints. But undergraduate science teaching, the breeding ground of teachers of school science, has remained largely teacher-centered in many lecture theaters and laboratories. Little wonder that newly graduated science teachers arrive in school science classrooms ill prepared to practice learner-sensitive teaching. Thus, the motivating force behind this book is to expedite the process of epistemological reform of undergraduate science teaching, to align it with the reform goals of the science education community. The knowledge gained from this unique collection of studies can be extended to science courses for all students, those going on directly into science, those planning to become K-12 teachers of science, and those in allied fields as well.
Contents: Peter C. Taylor/Penny J. Gilmer/Kenneth Tobin: Kenneth Tobin: Preface: Introducing Transformations – Peter C. Taylor: On Being Impressed by College Teaching – Craig Bowen: From Connections to Survival: Diane’s Experiences in the Chemistry Classroom – Noelle Griffiths: What Does that Word Mean? The Importance of Language in Learning Biology – Hedy Moscovici: Dynamics of Power in Teaching University Biology: Influence on Student Learning – Kathryn Scantlebury: A Feminist Pedagogy in Undergraduate Science: Conflicting Concepts? – Wolff-Michael Roth/Kenneth Tobin: College Physics Teaching: From Boundary Work to Border Crossing and Community Building – Abdullah O. Abbas/Kenneth A. Goldsby/Penny J. Gilmer: Promoting Active Learning in a University Chemistry Class: Metaphors as Referents for Teachers’ Roles and Actions – Rosalind Humerick: Effective Strategies for Active Learning in the Small Chemistry Classroom or Laboratory – Harold B. White III: Confronting Undergraduate Dualism with Problem-Based Learning – Susan Mattson: What It Means to Achieve: Negotiating Assessment in a Biology Course – Sabitra Brush: Team Teaching in a Restructured Physical Science Course – Carol Briscoe: Evolution of a University Biology Teacher’s Classroom Interactions – Kenneth Tobin: Learning to Teach Science Using the Internet to Connect Communities of Learners – Ben Cunningham: How Do I Express, Communicate, and Have Legitimated as Valid Knowledge the Spiritual Qualities in My Educational Journey? – Margarita Cuervo: Spirituality in the Classroom – Mark Campbell Williams: Dreams in University Computing Education: A Heuristic Self-Study – Penny J. Gilmer: Opalescence at the Triple Point: Teaching, Research, and Service.