Why and how sociocultural-historical perspective lead us to ask different questions when doing research in STEM?
Paper in a Symposium (Symp)
1:30 PM, Thursday 31 Aug 2017 (20 minutes)
Convention Center - 205 B
Our contribution seeks to discuss how, as researchers in STEM, we have come to ask different questions as science teachers face difficult challenges in the context of a curricular reform. The Quebec reform requires that they integrate technological design approaches during class workshops in support of the appropriation of scientific concepts (MELS, 2006). We witness that science teachers still resist moving away from an empiricorealistic conception of experimental methods as they propose learning tasks to students (Barma, 2011, Désaultels and Larochelle, 1989). More specifically, in the context of school science education, teachers can be expected to experience a basic contradiction between teaching for tests and grades versus teaching for supporting students’ mastering their own relationship to a sociotechnical society. For Fourez, being technoscientifically literate means knowing how to use knowledge for choice and decision, and not focusing on its value in an ivory tower (Fourez, 2002). We lead participant teachers to question the way scientific enquiry is presented to students in order to better link theory with practice: by engaging students in technological design processes in building prototypes and making more sense of scientific concepts (Lacasse & Barma, 2012). Our team will present how, over a period of six years, the researchers and teachers endeavoured to at sublate dichotomies between science and technology in teaching and learning. The analysis of recurring tensions and the emergence of levels of contradictions will be at the heart of our discussion. We conclude that their resolution is only accomplished through practice with the teachers who co-modelled the learning situations with us.