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Understanding Meanings of Interdisciplinary Science Inquiry in an Era of Next Generation Science Standards

Abstract

"Once again the new educational reform is dawning in the US and a framework for K-12 science education addresses need of science, engineering and technology, which permeates every aspect of our life. The framework focuses on integrating the ideas of science and engineering practices. The new framework demands interdisciplinary inquiry teaching with specific focus on the engineering practice in the classroom. The expectation of implementing interdisciplinary inquiry in the classroom is new for all the stakeholders including teachers. In response to need of how to support teachers we present a framework for understanding Interdisciplinary Science Inquiry (ISI) for science teaching and learning for K-12 science in the classroom. The current literature indicates the lack of consensus in the definition and understanding of interdisciplinarity specifically in terms of science in K-12 context. In this research paper we present a framework for Interdisciplinary Science Inquiry (ISI) and different dimensions of ISI based on scientists' interviews and pertinent literature. The four dimensions of ISI comprised of : (a) Science and Engineering Practices, (b) Crosscutting Concepts, (c) Disciplinary core ideas and (d) Drivers of Interdisciplinary Research."

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