Questions Asked by Primary Student Teachers about Observations of a Science Demonstration

Aug. 01, 2011

Source: European Journal of Teacher Education; Vol. 34 Issue 3, p347-361. (August, 2011).

In this study, the authors asked 110 primary student teachers to write down what kind of questions they would ask their pupils about a demonstration.

Almost half of the student teachers posed questions that were either inappropriate or presupposed that the pupils would know the answer.
For example, they directly asked for an explanation of the phenomenon instead of asking what inferences the pupils could make on the basis of their observations.

There was a lack of questions that would draw the pupils' attention to the variables that may cause the phenomenon to happen.

Only about 15% of the student teachers formed questions such as 'What is happening?' or 'How is it happening?'.

All in all, primary student teachers seem to need extra practice in forming questions based on scientific observation.

Updated: Nov. 27, 2012