Bridging the Gap between Teaching and Research on Science Inquiry: Reflections based on Two Action Research Projects

Birgitte Bjønness, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Gerd Johansen, University College of Østfold, Norway

Abstract: Collaborative action research provides opportunities for teachers and educational researchers to develop classroom practice as a joint achievement. In this paper, we reflect upon experiences from two extensive action research projects aimed at improving the practice of science inquiry at upper secondary schools. We experienced two main challenges regarding the processes: transitioning from the planning stages to implementation, and not utilizing sufficiently the distinct voices of the teacher and the researcher to improve the practice. We argue that the concepts of tools and multi-voice from activity theory provide valuable perspectives that can complement action research strategies. We propose that the joint development of concrete tools for use in the classroom might act to bridge the gap between research and the practice of science inquiry.

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