On the hunt for elusive “meanings”
The feature article discussed in this forum presents an interesting description of how students work in the context of a virtual world, where they design phenomena that they subsequently investigate by analyzing graphical representations. The study is aligned with the current canon of science education interested in understanding the inter-psychological and intra-psychological determinants of learning. Its main focus is on "meaning making." In this contribution to the forum, I articulate some shortcomings inherent in this theoretical notion, which, in essence, hides rather than reveals the real issues in and of learning. I offer some alternative avenues, both theoretical and methodological, for framing pertinent issues; in so doing, I (endeavor to) open up new avenues for research in science education. In essence, therefore, I offer possible avenues in response to the question, "What more can there be done by science education research?" that would allow us to eschew what I perceive to be hidden contradictions that interfere with making theoretical and practical advances in our field.
Cultural Studies of Science Education
Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy