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Why Do Secondary School Students Lose Their Interest in Science? Or Does it Never Emerge? A Possible and Overlooked Explanation

Anderhag, Per ; Wickman, Per-Olof ; Bergqvist, Kerstin ; Jakobson, Britt ; Hamza, Karim Mikael ; Säljö, Roger

Science education, 2016, Vol.100 (5), p.791-813 [Peer Reviewed Journal]

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  • Title:
    Why Do Secondary School Students Lose Their Interest in Science? Or Does it Never Emerge? A Possible and Overlooked Explanation
  • Author: Anderhag, Per ; Wickman, Per-Olof ; Bergqvist, Kerstin ; Jakobson, Britt ; Hamza, Karim Mikael ; Säljö, Roger
  • Subjects: Naturwissenschaftliche Bildung ; Secondary School ; Interessenentwicklung ; Interessenforschung ; elementary ; Education & Educational Research ; Utbildningsvetenskap ; identity ; work ; Educational Sciences
  • Is Part Of: Science education, 2016, Vol.100 (5), p.791-813
  • Description: In this paper, we review research on how students' interest in science changes through the primary to secondary school transition. In the literature, the findings generally show that primary students enjoy science but come to lose interest during secondary school. As this claim is based mainly on interview and questionnaire data, that is on secondary reports from students about their interest in science, these results are reexamined through our own extensive material from primary and secondary school on how interest is constituted through classroom discourse. Our results suggest the possibility that primary students do not lose their interest in science, but rather that an interest in science is never constituted. The overview indicates that studies relying on interviews and questionnaires make it difficult to ascertain what the actual object of interest is when students act in the science classroom. The possibility suggested should, if valid, have consequences for science education and be worthy of further examination.
  • Language: English
  • Identifier: ISSN: 1098-237X
    ISSN: 0036-8326
    EISSN: 1098-237X
    DOI: 10.1002/sce.21231

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