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ISSN 1087-3430 Vol. 4 - No. 2 - December 1999

The Last of the Millennium Edition

Thank you for your interest in the Electronic Journal of Science Education, the first electronic journal of its kind devoted to the timely sharing of science education issues via the World Wide Web. The editors and review board hope you find the enclosed articles academically and professionally valuable.

John R. Cannon,
Editor and Publisher

David T. Crowther,
Associate Editor and Publisher
University of Nevada, Reno

Table of Contents

EJSE Editorial...

Going Electronic in the New Millennium?

John R. Cannon
Editor and Publisher

Article One

Inquiring into Three Approaches to Hands-On Learning in Elementary and Secondary Science Methods Courses


Marianne B. Barnes, Ph.D.
University of North Florida
Jacksonville, FL


Kathleen R. Foley
University of North Florida
Jacksonville, FL


Three approaches to hands-on science learning were investigated in two contexts, an elementary science methods class and a secondary science methods class. An activity on foam, available on the Exploratorium's Institute for Inquiry web page, was the focus of the study. The students were exposed to a directed hands-on activity, a challenge situation, and an open-ended inquiry setting. Sequence of stations appeared to affect outcomes. Similarities and differences between groups were noted and analyzed. The authors concluded that when developing models for teaching science methods courses, methods instructors need to share power with prospective teachers by providing opportunities for them to both experience and evaluate methodologies, in groups and as individuals.

Article Two

Evaluation of a District-wide Inservice Professional Development Program for Teaching Science: Challenges Faced and Lessons Learned


Pradeep Maxwell Dass
Department of Teacher Education
Northeastern Illinois University
5500 N. St. Louis Ave.Chicago, IL
773-794-2913 (voice)
773-794-6243 (fax)


Nation-wide dissemination of the Iowa Chautauqua Model for inservice professional development of K-12 science teachers has led to new professional development programs in many states. The Collier Chautauqua Program (CCP) implemented the Iowa Chautauqua model at the district level in Collier County, Florida. A formative evaluation of the implementation of CCP focused on teacher enhancement resulting from participation in the program, teacher concerns regarding classroom implementation of instructional innovations, and issues related to district-wide implementation of the program. Results were communicated regularly to the district administrators responsible for program implementation throughout the two-year period of evaluation. A reflective analysis of the process of formative evaluation reveals challenges involved in conducting evaluation activities, limitations of the use of a survey instrument with Likert-type response scale, and limitations of qualitative approaches to data collection. Identification and discussion of these challenges is useful for improving formative evaluations, which in turn should improve the professional development program informed by such an evaluation.

Article Three

Middle and Secondary Science Teacher Opinions about Working in Scientists' Laboratories during Preservice Preparation


Claudia T. Melear, Ph. D.
Associate Professor
Secondary Science Education Coordinator
The University of Tennessee
311 Claxton Addition
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-340(
(423)974-5394 - Voice
(423)974-8103 - Fax


Science department chairpersons created lists of tasks and benefits which would accrue to preservice teachers while they worked in the scientistsí laboratories. Teachers agreed to a higher percentage than preservice teachers with the scientists as to what those benefits were. Recommendations include ways scientists and science educators can create opportunities for preservice teachers to experience authentic science in ways which provide legitimate peripheral participation in science.

EJSE's Special Section on Standards-based Exemplar Lesson Plans

Special Section: Resources and Programs in Higher Education

compiled by David T. Crowther, Associate Editor, EJSE

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