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An Empirical Method for the Study of Scientists’ Explanations to Students

Goddiksen, Mads (2012) An Empirical Method for the Study of Scientists’ Explanations to Students. [Preprint]

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Abstract

Students in interdisciplinary science educations are faced with the challenge of combining knowledge and standards from different disciplines. To help them overcome this challenge it would be helpful to reflect more explicitly on what differences in epistemic aims there may be between the different disciplines. To aid further studies that will strengthen such discussions this paper outlines an empirical method that can be used to expose possible qualitative differences in explanations from different disciplines. The method is based on the use of science textbooks as sources of explanations. I will argue that it is important to be very clear about how explanations are identified in the sources if the aim of the study is to make a strong empirical claim about the nature of explanations. Following a discussion of similar studies (Z. Dagher, 1991; A. I. Woody, 2004a) I will present an alternative procedure for identifying explanations in written sources that suits the purposes of this study better. A pilot study is then presented to illustrate the method and its limitations.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Goddiksen, Madsmads.goddiksen@ivs.au.dk
Keywords: Explanation,empirical methodology, textbooks
Subjects: General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Science Education
Depositing User: Dr. Mads Goddiksen
Date Deposited: 02 May 2013 20:14
Last Modified: 17 Nov 2014 14:26
Item ID: 9720
Subjects: General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Science Education
Date: September 2012
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9720

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