A study of Newfoundland high school students views on technology

Heath, Nancy (1994) A study of Newfoundland high school students views on technology. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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The STS (Science, Technology and Society) movement has become increasingly important in science education in recent years. Science education must now prepare students to live and work in a society that is likely to be even more technologically oriented than today. This implies that students must understand the concept of technology if they are to participate fully in society. Developing a clear understanding of technology is likely to be enhanced by addressing any misconceptions that students may already hold. This study is an attempt to discover how clear are the conceptions and misconceptions about technology that are held by a typical group of high school students in this province. -- A representative sample consisting of 36 students who were likely to participate in a pilot version of the new STS course was selected from participating schools. Attrition resulted in a final sample size of 26. An approximately 30 minute interview was conducted with each student. -- The interview included discussions of examples of science and technology, the activities associated with science and technology, the purposes of science and technology, the relationships between science, technology and society, characteristics of scientists and technologists and sources of information about science and technology. Each interview was tape-recorded and transcribed verbatim. Conceptual inventories were then constructed from each transcript and the data were analyzed. -- The results indicated that a majority of the students did not have a clear understanding of the concept of technology, and, that in many cases, they had difficulty distinguishing between science and technology. Most students could differentiate between activities associated with science and activities associated with technology, respectively. Many students held stereotypical images of scientists and technologists. A majority of the students in the sample felt it was important to be informed about science and technology and that the general population should play a role in the decision-making process for matters involving science and technology. There was some concern expressed by the students that there was not enough information available to them in school about science and technology, even though school was usually their primary source of information.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/10642
Item ID: 10642
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 84-88.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1994
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: High school students--Newfoundland and Labrador--Attitudes; Science--Social aspects; Science--Study and teaching (Secondary)--Newfoundland and Labrador; Technology--Social aspects; Technology--Study and teaching (Secondary)--Newfoundland and Labrador.

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