Kind, V. (2009). Pedagogical content knowledge in science education: Perspectives and potential for progress. Studies in Science Education, 45(2), 169–204.
Debate surrounding the definition of pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) has limited its use in guiding teacher practice and teacher education. To help trainees acquire the unique skills of expert teachers in translating content for learners, this paper argues that an explicit focus on PCK (rather than an emphasis on subject matter knowledge) is needed.
Oliver, M. (2011). Towards an understanding of neuroscience for science educators. Studies in Science Education, 47(2), 211–235.
In this review, Oliver calls for greater cross-pollination between neuroscience research and educational practice. She argues that a richer understanding of the brain can dispel educational myths—and indeed uses research data in this paper to do so. She explores ways in which brain science can not only inform emerging theories of learning and teaching but also inspire effective educational interventions.
van Driel, J. H., Meirink, J. A., van Veen, K., & Zwart, R. C. (2012). Current trends and missing links in studies on teacher professional development in science education: A review of design features and quality of research. Studies in Science Education, 48(2), 129–160. doi:10.1080/03057267.2012.738020
This review paper summarises the current state of research on professional development in science education. It offers a number of insights and recommendations for the many informal science institutions that offer teacher professional development courses.
Levinson, R. (2010). Science education and democratic participation: An uneasy congruence. Studies in Science Education, 46(1), 69–119.
Democratic participation is supposed to be enabled by the skills of scientific literacy. But there are several models of democratic participation—deficit, deliberative, and more radical forms. The author of this paper argues that educators need to make explicit to students the political and hegemonic bases underlying these models as well as the role of scientific knowledge and decision-making. This paper may be of interest to ISE educators leading programs supporting scientific literacy through argumentation, participation, and
Scott, P., Mortimer, E. & Ametller, J. (2011). Pedagogical link-making: A fundamental aspect of teaching and learning scientific conceptual knowledge. Studies in Science Education, 47(1), 3–36.
This study discusses a process that the authors have termed ‘pedagogical link-making’. This may be described as the way in which educators and learners establish connections between ideas as part of the ongoing interactions comprising teaching and learning. This process has clear implications for educators: by supporting knowledge building, promoting continuity, and encouraging emotional investment, educators can help learners make links between ideas and experiences.
Anderman, E. M., Sinatra, G. M., & Gray, D. L. (2012). The challenges of teaching and learning about science in the twenty-first century: Exploring the abilities and constraints of adolescent learners. Studies in Science Education, 48(1), 89–117.
In this paper, Anderman and colleagues examine the skills adolescents need in order to learn science effectively. They note that many negative experiences associated with science learning could be avoided if educators were more aware of the abilities of adolescents and the types of environments that foster particular abilities. They offer seven recommendations to practitioners.
Villanueva, M. G., Taylor, J., Therrien, W., & Hand, B. (2012). Science education for students with special needs. Studies in Science Education, 48(2), 187–215.
Students with special educational needs score significantly below their peers across several measures of science achievement. However, educational approaches that provide appropriate scaffolding and support, such as the inquiry-based science writing heuristic described in this paper, can benefit special educational needs students and ensure an equitable experience for all.
Christensen, C. (2009). Risk and school science education. Studies in Science Education, 45(2), 205–223.
To acquire skills associated with decision-making on socioscientific issues, students need to understand the concepts of risk. Teaching about risk involves acknowledging the uncertainty and limitations of scientific knowledge. This study explores the ways in which risk may be addressed in science education.
Vetleseter Bøe, M., Henriksen, E.K., Lyons, T. & Schreiner, C. (2011). Participation in science and technology: Young people’s achievement-related choices in late-modern societies. Studies in Science Education, 47(1), 37–72.
This study examines student choices relating to the selection of STEM courses for high school and university study. The main focus here is on the subjective value of the choice as perceived by the individual, and the individual’s expectation of success in the subject or the study. The argument put forward in this study is supported by a broad and international body of literature, and highlights a number of key factors affecting students’ (and especially girls’) engagement with STEM subjects. This discussion will have particular significance for ISE educators currently working to promote youth engagement with STEM by providing opportunities to meet practicing scientists and thus potentially supplying role models and enabling the youth to develop an identity as science learners and future scientists.