Thesis defence D.H.J. van Breukelen: learning science

21 June 2017 12:30 - Location: Aula, TU Delft - By: Webredactie

Teaching and learning science through design activities. A revision of design-based learning. Promotor: Prof.dr. M.J. de Vries (TBM).

 Teaching and learning science through design activities – A revision of design-based learning
Juveniles nowadays encounter a complex world, inter alia, because science and technology have become strongly entangled and have grown denser in our personal lives. School systems have a duty to deliver juveniles ready to face this complex society. Therefore, many national governments aim for interdisciplinary curricula to create a holistic understanding of science and technology. For this, design-based learning (DBL) seems a sophisticated approach where student learn by facing design challenges. Nearly all DBL approaches result in a high learning level of skills and practices but, despite the strong pedagogical base of DBL, disappointing conceptual learning gains. The PhD research shows that the high complexity and diversity of design tasks masks the potentially rich learning environment of LBD to learn concepts. This high complexity also interferes with teacher handling and results in poor teacher guidance. Furthermore, the research shows that implementing scaffolding and explicit teaching strategies positively affects concept learning and offers a solution to the complexity problem mentioned before. By doing this, a learning environment arises that facilitates a high learning level of skills and conceptual knowledge. It creates a pedagogical approach (FITS model) that stimulates learning by providing a proper task Focus, Investigating scientifically what has to be learned, informed application of content during Technological design, and creating and explicating Synergy between science and technology. Overall, the FITS model seems a promising strategy to implement DBL optimally in the educational practice.

More information?
For access to theses by the PhD students you can have a look in TU Delft Repository, the digital storage of publications of TU Delft. Theses will be available within a few weeks after the actual thesis defence.