Why Students Should Read Scientific Literature
It’s no secret that the science curriculum in America requires a major overhaul. Only four countries have higher than United States on primary and secondary education. The teachers of the U.S. devote far more time to their jobs as compared to teachers in other nations. However, students in America United States lag those of other countries in terms of the field of science, as per the results from PISA. Program for International Student Assessment (PISA).
About half of students who have engineering and science majors later switch to different fields or quit. The critics of the current system of education for science have repeatedly blamed problems on the lack of funds and teacher rewards. Apathy towards science could be due to a insufficient critical thinking and an increased emphasis on unnecessary memorizing.
I was a mentor to an aspiring high school student while they worked on the science fair project. Although he was a superb memory keeper but he struggled to comprehend certain ideas behind the research, which hindered his advancement. When he was exposed to relevant articles on the subject, absorption was easier and he was ranked with the highest score of students at the local fair. When we force feed facts to ensure the purpose of memorization by rote it is essentially misleading students by saying that science is useful only when you are passively instilling facts. But science is purely conceptual and its advancement is dependent on the development of innovative concepts.
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Programmes have been designed to increase the level of scientific literacy. However, very few schools have taken advantage of these. The CREATE initiative (Consider Read, Think, Develop hypotheses, analyse and interpret the data and imagine what could be the following Experiment) seeks to integrate learning science by analyzing primary research. CREATE is a project of the National Science Foundation (NSF) created summer workshops to educate teachers who have continued to employ this method in their classrooms.
While schools are beginning to adopt CREATE, initiative’s creator Dr. Sally Hoskins believes there are a variety of reasons why the approach isn’t being used by a lot of teachers. “They are using Powerpoint presentations written, but altering their methods will require a commitment into time.”
She said that “they actually already know the right thing to do. CREATE requires faculty to bring their superior data analysis abilities, which they are constantly using in the classroom.” She believes that teachers are driven to present as much information as they can, and that integrating books takes an excessive amount of time.
Science in the Classroom (SitC) is a program funded by the NSF offers free annotated documents to improve the skills of high school students and undergraduate students to comprehend peer-reviewed research. The annotations include definitions of terms used in science as well as explanations of methods as well as the results of research that has been referenced and justifications for conclusions. An instructional guide is provided to the teacher that outlines links between the ideas in the article and pertinent STEM education standards. All in all, SitC papers are designed to teaching ideas related to scientific processes and communication.
One of the biggest challenges facing students to comprehend is the intrinsic persuasiveness of scientific research articles. They allow authors to promote their ideas and show their validity. As a potential car purchaser or a voter in a political election the reader has to decide whether the item presented is genuine. Students are also often challenged with the need to justify their studies or analysing data shown in diagrams. With the help of current lessons learned, students are equipped with the capability to analyse and evaluate arguments made in the writings of authors.
When the hurdle of comprehension is removed, students can are able to make the language of research articles fascinating. Journal clubs that encourage undergraduate students to read and present their work orally have proved not just to increase curiosity in research, but also to build confidence and confidence in science while helping them prepare for postgraduate studies.
The methods used by researchers to solve particular issues are the foundation of scientific research. Although they do not have the chance to apply these techniques students are able to master the abilities required. Numerous studies have shown that reading and studying primary literature enhances knowledge of science, critical thinking capabilities, and knowledge of scientific information.
Textbooks, the most widely used way of teaching visuals to students composed by researchers and professors who have written research papers that allow students to be experts within their field. While they’re still reliable sources of fundamental information they should be supplemented with research papers to give relevance since they don’t reflect the rapid development of science or the current issues. Review papers are a good source for background information as they present current concepts and the challenges that remain in their respective fields but without offering innovative research. Additionally, they employ the language of the world of science, offering students with a glimpse of the future possibilities.
It’s simple to see how these principles are applicable outside of the classroom too. If students are actively engaged with sources like research literature and journals, they are more likely to use the knowledge they’ve acquired. Students are able to easily communicate directly with authors documents themselves should they need to make inquiries or suggestions.
For instance, assigning statistical problems based on scientific papers and giving students the ability to develop solutions that are compatible with published results can provide relevant instruction.
If we want to see advances in scientific research and in the pursuit of innovation, we have to open up to students. Refraining them from the real task of fully understanding the scientific information in the literature only deprives them of a better education that is not only essential for future career opportunities but also for better informed decisions.
Take a look at the ongoing debate about the relationship between autism and vaccinations. Studies, like the one released in 1998 that first claimed an association, are evaluated for validity from prior reading. Instead of instructing students to view research documents as gospels, educators must teach students to ask questions and be skeptical of when they read a piece of material. It is essential to provide students with an incentive to study science through teaching them how to develop the ability to reason.
It’s no secret that the science curriculum in America requires a major overhaul. Only four countries have higher than United States on primary and secondary education. The teachers of the U.S. devote far more time to their jobs as compared to teachers in other nations. However, students in America United States lag those of other…