Open Inquiry based learning experiences: a case study in the context of energy exchange by thermal radiation

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Abstract

An open inquiry (OI)-based teaching/learning experience, regarding a scientific investigation of the process of energy exchange by thermal radiation, is presented. A sample of upper secondary school physics teachers carried out this experience at the University of Palermo, Italy, in the framework of ESTABLISH, a FP7 European Project aimed at promoting and developing inquiry-based science education. The teachers had the opportunity to personally experience an OI-based learning activity, with the aim of exploring the pedagogical potentialities of this teaching approach to promote both the understanding of difficult concepts and a deeper view of scientific practices. The teachers were firstly engaged in discussions concerning real-life problematic situations, and then stimulated to design and carry out their own laboratory activities, aimed at investigating the process of energy exchange by thermal radiation. A scientific study on the energy exchange between a powered resistor and its surrounding environment, during the heating and cooling processes, was designed and performed. Here we report the phases of this experiment by following the teachers' perspective. A structured interview conducted both before and after the OI experience allowed us to analyze and point out the teachers' feedback from a pedagogical point of view. The advantages and limits of an OI-based approach to promote the development of more student-centred inquiry-oriented teaching strategies are finally discussed.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)015024-
Numero di pagine16
RivistaEuropean Journal of Physics
Volume35
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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