Effective Science Learning through Restructuring and Reconstruction from the Knowledge Soup
Keywords:Construction and restructuring of knowledge, knowledge soup, individual and team work, authentic science learning.
AbstractAuthentic and meaningful science learning can be achieved when students are given the opportunity to organize, reorganize and restructure their learning from the knowledge soup. This is the focus of this paper that investigated how the performance of undergraduate science students could be enhanced when they construct and monitor their own learning individually and in team. It was a case study of 22 integrated science students’ learning of Organic Compounds I and II courses, facilitated and monitored in two semesters. The students were assigned specific tasks individually on the course outlines which they presented one after the other in two hours’ lectures a week that lasted for 12 weeks in the first semester. In the second semester, tasks were assigned on team (5 groups of 4 or 5) basis and were presented as projects and seminars on power points followed by discussion and interactive sessions two hours a week for another 12 weeks. Instruments for data collection included the moderated semester examination questions with marking schemes, class assignments and tests which assessed the depth of individual and team works, skills of presentation and quality of contributions to class discussions. The analysis of data revealed good performances in the two semesters but a better one during the second semester when the students worked in teams. Appropriate conclusion was drawn and recommendations made. This study calls for reawakening of learners’ initiated, student-centered pedagogy which is gradually fading away in our science classrooms.
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