Learning scientific reasoning: A latent transition analysis
SourceLearning and Individual Differences, 92, (2021), article 102043
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI OLO
Learning and Individual Differences
SubjectLearning and Plasticity
Primary education in many countries enables children to learn the scientific reasoning skills of hypothesizing, experimenting, interpreting data and drawing conclusions. Research has shown that these component skills develop at a different pace and with substantial variation among same-age children. How these differences play out in the short term is less well known. This study used Latent Transition Analysis of the worksheets filled out by 166 fifth-graders during five science lessons to explore whether different proficiency profiles can be identified, and if so, how children transition between these profiles. The results distinguished four distinct profiles, which were labelled as high achievers, low achievers, experimenters and theorists. Children transitioned regularly among these profiles and two possible pathways toward becoming a high achiever emerged: from low achievers via experimenters or via theorists. Awareness of these individual differences can help teachers differentiate their science lessons.
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