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Chapter 7

Research and Practice on Science Teachers’ Continuous Professional Development in Argumentation

This contribution interrogates shifts in the landscape of science education research and practice that have had a substantial influence on teacher learning in argumentation. Existing research on the specialized knowledge and practices unique to science teaching is summarized. From this, the question of why argumentation is uncommon in school science when there has been significant attention to research and practice in this area for decades is raised. In light of this dilemma, argumentation is considered in the context of current reform endeavors that foreground productive participation in scientific practices for understanding and using disciplinary core ideas in chemistry (and other domains of science) to construct evidence-based explanations for natural phenomena. The demands of supporting teacher development in argumentation is further explored using conceptual, epistemic, and social lenses. Once this terrain is mapped, the literature on science teachers’ learning needs is examined, and promising approaches for teacher learning and development are described. The chapter concludes with what the authors believe to be one of the most pressing considerations moving forward with the continuous professional development of science teachers – that of equitable opportunities and access to high quality science learning experiences for every student.

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15 Feb 2019
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