New Perspectives in Science Education

Edition 14

Accepted Abstracts

Promoting Teacher Students’ System Competence by the Development of a Syndrome Approach in an Interdisciplinary Seminar

Nicklas Müller, University of Bremen (Germany)

Doris Elster, Institute for Science Education, University of Bremen (Germany)

Abstract

The cross-linkages in our globalised world are becoming more and more complex. To be able to unravel these interconnections and to take part in the processes of sustainable development, the promotion of the system competence is highly relevant. The “INQUIRE for Teacher Students” course is a training program for biology teacher students of the secondary level. The aims of the course are the promotion of teacher students’ subject knowledge, their system competence and their knowledge of assessment and instructional strategies of system competence. During the course the teacher students increase their system competence by developing complex syndrome approaches (visual representations) in the context of biodiversity loss and climate change in the German Wadden Sea. The syndrome approach is a tool to analyse the system structure and determine unsustainable developments and environmental problems in earth systems. It has been developed by the German Advisory Council on Global Change.

To promote the system competence within the INQUIRE course the teacher students develop complex simulation games for pupils of the secondary level and measure the impact of these games on the pupils’ system competence. The first survey wave was conducted with 22 participants and the data were collected via interviews, questionnaires (pre-post-design) and graphical diagrams (concept-maps & syndrome approaches).The analysis followed the paradigm of the qualitative content analyses. The graphical diagrams were analysed quantitatively.

The results demonstrate that the syndrome approach is a good method to foster the students’ subject knowledge and their system competence. The study also reveals a need for a new system competence model in respect to issues and challenges of sustainable development.

Keywordstraining program, biology, INQUIRE, teaching;

References

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