Explicit Teaching and Scaffolding to Enhance Concept Learning by Design Challenges

  • Dave van Breukelen Fontys University of Applied Sciences for Teacher Education Sittard
  • Maurice Smeets Fontys University of Applied Sciences for Teacher Education Sittard
  • Marc de Vries Delft University of Technology

Abstract

This paper presents a mixed methods study, carried out among 21 first-year student teachers, that investigated learning outcomes of a modified Learning by Design (LBD) task. The study is part of a series of studies that aims to improve learning, teaching and teacher training. Design-based science challenges are reasonably successful project-based approaches for breaking down the boundaries between traditional STEM subjects. Previous learning outcomes of the extensively studied LBD approach demonstrated a strong positive effect on students’ skills. However, compared to traditional classroom settings, LBD provided little profit on (scientific) concept learning. For this, according to two preliminary studies, a lack of explicit teaching and scaffolding strategies, both strongly teacher-dependent, bears a share of responsibility. The results of the third study discussed in this paper indicate that emphasizing these strategies strengthens concept learning without reducing positive effects on skill performances.

Published
2015-12-01
How to Cite
van Breukelen, D., Smeets, M., & de Vries, M. (2015). Explicit Teaching and Scaffolding to Enhance Concept Learning by Design Challenges. Journal of Research in STEM Education, 1(2), 87-105. Retrieved from https://j-stem.net/index.php/jstem/article/view/14
Section
Articles