Students' Personal Connection with Science: Investigating the Multidimensional Phenomenological Structure of Self-Relevance

Matthew Hartwell, Avi Kaplan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper presents findings from a two-phase mixed methods study investigating the phenomenological structure of self-relevance among ninth-grade junior high school biology students (Phase 1: N = 118; Phase 2: N = 139). We begin with a phenomenological multidimensional definition of self-relevance as comprising three dimensions: the academic content, the student's identity, and the connection between content and identity. We then describe the procedure of coding students’ writing about the relevance of biology concepts to their life, the development of a survey that captures these codes, and the results of exploratory factor and multidimensional scaling analyses that supported the three-component phenomenological structure of students’ relevance constructions across different subgroups while simultaneously highlighting the complex and situated nature of these self-relevance constructions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-104
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Experimental Education
Volume86
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Relevance
  • motivation
  • multidimensional scaling
  • phenomenology
  • science education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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