Biomind - A new biology curriculum that enables authentic inquiry learning

Michal Zion, Devora Shapira, Michaella Slezak, Efrat Link, Nurit Bashan, Miri Brumer, Talmona Orian, R. Nussinovitch, Bruria Agrest, Ruth Mendelovici

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

In recent years, the science teaching community and curriculum developers have emphasised the importance of teaching inquiry and teaching science as inquiry. One way of developing learners' skills for planning and carrying out scientific research is by allowing them to perform independent research, guided by a teacher. It was recently discovered that there are considerable differences between experiments conducted by scientists and those conducted by students, with regard to the cognitive processes that the experimenters go through. Developing inquiry study activities that emphasise authentic inquiry was suggested in order to introduce students to cognitive activity that more closely resembles that of scientific professionals. This article describes the Biomind programme, intended for students of Grades 11 and 12 (ages 16 to 18 years) majoring in biology. The curriculum, developed by biology teachers, enables students to conduct independent research under teacher guidance. The curriculum emphasises the learning process, not just the outcome, and so students must reflect upon the work in progress. Moreover, the Biomind curriculum follows the principles of authentic inquiry. Biomind may improve students' scientific thinking abilities, expand the guidance aspect of teachers' work, and inspire curriculum developers to further emphasise inquiry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-67
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Education
Volume38
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank Deborah Court for editorial assistance. Michal Zion’s work was supported by the Sacta Rashi foundation. This research was supported by Uri and Ruth Oppenheimer`s contribution in memory of Paula-Ruth and Hugo-Zvi Oppenheimer.

Keywords

  • Authentic inquiry
  • Curriculum
  • Full inquiry

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