Volume 3 Issue 1-2 (2014)

Impact of Argumentation in the Chemistry Laboratory on Conceptual Comprehension of Turkish Students

pp. 19-34  |  Published Online: November 2014  |  DOI: 10.12973/edupij.2014.312.2

Ali Riza Sekerci, Nurtac Canpolat

Abstract

Aim of this research is to evaluate the impact of argumentation in the chemistry laboratory on conceptual comprehension of students. This research follows a triangulation design, categorized under mixed-method design variations, which include both qualitative and quantitative research designs. The research is conducted with 91 first grade university students studying in two different classes of the Department of Science Education, Kazım Karabekir Education Faculty at the Ataturk University, located in eastern Turkey. One class was randomly designated as the experimental group, with another as the control group. Research data was collected via a General Chemistry Laboratory Concept Test (GCLCT) containing 33 items, a test containing ten open-ended items, a semi-structured interview form, and a written feedback form, all designed by the researchers. Data from the GCLCT were analyzed through predictive statistics method, while data from the open-ended questions, semi-structured interview and written feedback form were analyzed through the descriptive analysis method. It is concluded from this research, that there is statistically significant difference between the GCLC post-test averages of the experimental and control groups. It was found that when compared to the control group, the proportion of experimental group students who answered the GCLC post-test items correctly is higher. In addition to this, the proportion of students who demonstrated misconceptions were higher in the control group students compared to the experimental group. It is concluded by this research, that argumentation provides more effective results in terms of comprehension of fundamental chemistry concepts, when compared to a traditional approach.

Keywords: argumentation, chemistry laboratory, conceptual comprehension, mixed design

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