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Will a Black Hole Eventually Swallow Earth?” Fifth Graders' Interest in Questions from a Textbook, an Open Educational Resource and Other Students' Questions
ARTICLE

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IJELLO Volume 11, Number 1, ISSN 1552-2237 Publisher: Informing Science Institute

Abstract

Can questions sent to Open-Educational-Resource (OER) websites such as Ask-An-Expert serve as indicators for students\u2019 interest in science? This issue was examined using an online questionnaire which included an equal number of questions about the topics “space\u201d and “nutrition\u201d randomly selected from three different sources: a 5th-grade science textbook, the “Ask-An-Expert\u201d website, and questions collected from other students in the same age group. A sample of 113 5th-graders from two elementary schools were asked to rate their interest level in finding out the answer to these questions without knowledge of their source. Significant differences in students\u2019 interest level were found between questions: textbook questions were ranked lowest for both subjects, and questions from the open-resource were ranked high. This finding suggests that questions sent to an open-resource could be used as an indicator of students\u2019 interest in science. In addition, the high correlation of interests expressed by students from the two schools may point to a potential generalization of the findings. This study contributes by highlighting OER as a new and promising indicator of student interest, which may help bring “student voices\u201d into mainstream science teaching to increase student interest in science.

Citation

Swirski, H. & Baram-Tsabari, A. (2015). Will a Black Hole Eventually Swallow Earth?” Fifth Graders' Interest in Questions from a Textbook, an Open Educational Resource and Other Students' Questions. Interdisciplinary Journal of E-Learning and Learning Objects, 11(1), 313-327. Informing Science Institute. Retrieved January 24, 2020 from .

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