ASSESSING THE CONDITION OF SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY SKILLS IN TEACHER EDUCATION USING PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL TASKS
1 J. Selye University, Faculty of Economics and Informatics, Department of Mathematics (SLOVAKIA)
2 J. Selye University, Faculty of Education, Department of Chemistry (SLOVAKIA)
3 J. Selye University, Faculty of Education (SLOVAKIA)
About this paper:
Conference name: 13th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 9-10 November, 2020
Location: Online Conference
Abstract:Science education is an essential requirement of our modern society, students are expected to have an adequate level of scientific literacy. However, the results of international and also domestic tests assessing scientific literacy suggest that science education in Slovakia is struggling with many problems. The average performance of students in PISA tests in Slovakia has been consistently below the OECD countries average over the last 20 years and there is no improvement in comparison with the results of previous years. There is a gap in the application of scientific knowledge, students’ motivation to study science decreases, as well as the popularity of science subjects. At present (not only) in Slovakia, but we are witnessing that the interest in science education is at a low level. One of the important tasks for our education to meet the challenges is to support the development of students’ scientific thinking and scientific competences. An important role in this is the activation and application of the acquired knowledge and skills in science-related problem-solving. In our empirical study, we measured the level of scientific thinking and inquiry skills of future teachers at our university. The aim of the research was to get an overview of teacher trainees’ scientific skills condition. We analysed the respondents´ answers for solving physics and chemistry tasks based on selected elements of scientific thinking and inquiry skills. We found that there is a statistically significant difference between the average performance of physics and chemistry tasks and the comparison of the distribution of scores also shows the difference. The average scores of the inquiry skills differ significantly from each other, the competence is related to the students’ score in the case of physics and chemistry as well.
Keywords: Science literacy, inquiry skills, science teacher education.