Science Teachers’ and Their Students’ Perceptions of Science and Scientists

Suzanne El Takach, Hagop A. Yacoubian
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Abstract


The purpose of this study was to explore school science teachers’ and their students’ perceptions of science and scientists. The participants included 116 in-service middle school chemistry teachers who attended a training program at the Faculty of Education, Lebanese University, and 250 of their students, randomly selected from a larger sample of 2345, enrolled in Grades 7-9 at Lebanese public schools all over Lebanon. Using the Draw-a-scientist-test (DAST), qualitative and quantitative data was collected from the participating teachers and their students. The teachers themselves administered the test to their students. Results showed that the stereotypical image of a scientist being a Caucasian, male, working in a lab, and conducting experiments mainly in chemistry were prevalent. There was absence of contemporary scientists and female scientists among the preferred names of scientists delivered by the students. The participants held positive attitudes towards scientists and many students were usually positive about pursuing careers in science and technology. Compared to their teachers, more students thought that scientists make inventions in the field of technology. Students in lower grades had more diverse images of scientists. The stereotypical images increased among students of higher grades and became more similar to those of their teachers and the authors of the textbooks that they use.

Keywords


Draw-a-scientist-test, Middle school, Nature of science, Student perceptions, Scientist, Teacher perceptions

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References


El Takach, S. & Yacoubian, H.A. (2020). Science teachers’ and their students’ perceptions of science and scientists. International Journal of Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology (IJEMST), 8(1), 65-75.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.46328/ijemst.v8i1.806

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Copyright (c) 2020 International Journal of Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology

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International Journal of Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology (IJEMST) 
 
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Place of Publication: Turkey & Name of Publisher: Ismail Sahin