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Journal of the Korean Chemical Society (JKCS)

ISSN 1017-2548(Print)
ISSN 2234-8530(Online)
Volume 56, Number 3
JKCSEZ 56(3)
June 20, 2012 

Characteristics of Middle School Students' Open-Inquiry Report and Their Perceptions of Conducting Inquiry

중학생의 자유 탐구 보고서에 나타난 특징과 탐구 수행에 대한 학생들의 인식
Mihyun Park, Jeongho Cha*, In Whan Kim

박미현, 차정호*, 김인환
Open inquiry, Inquiry report, Inquiry subject, Scientific hypothesis, Inquiry variable
In this study, open inquiry reports of 165 eighth graders in Daegu were analyzed in terms of content area, the types of inquiry hypothesis, and the types of inquiry variables. Before summer vacation, students learned about inquiry process and explored their own inquiry topic for two class hours. During summer vacation, students performed open inquiry including problem selection, designing and performing experiment, data collection, data analysis, and writing report. After the vacation, students submitted their reports, and answered to additional survey regarding the source of inquiry idea, the definition of hypothesis, and the most difficult step of inquiry process. As a result, chemistry was the most dominant content area of the reports and biology and life science were the next. 130 out of 165 reports included inquiry hypotheses, and most of them were predictive hypotheses. In many reports, dependent and independent variables could not be identified because of their ambiguity. However, inquiry variables described in experimental design, which were mostly categorical variables, were clearer than those described in inquiry subject and inquiry hypothesis. The most difficult step of inquiry process for students was to generate an idea for open inquiry.
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