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Open AccessArticle

Didactic Focus Areas in Science Education Research

1
Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki, Siltavuorenpenger 5A, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
2
Department of Computer Science, School of Science, Aalto University, P.O. Box 15400, 00076 AALTO, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(4), 294; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9040294
Received: 24 November 2019 / Revised: 8 December 2019 / Accepted: 10 December 2019 / Published: 12 December 2019
This study provides an overview of the didactic focus areas in educational research in biology, chemistry and physics, seeking to identify the focus areas that are investigated frequently and those that have been studied rarely or not at all. We applied the didactic focus-based categorization analysis method (DFCM), which is based on an extension of the didactic triangle. As the data set, we used 250 papers published in the Nordic Studies in Science Education (NorDiNa) between 2005 and 2013, and the European Science Education Research Association (ESERA) 2013 conference proceedings covering education at upper secondary and tertiary levels. The results show that the teacher’s pedagogical actions and the student–content relationship were the most frequently studied aspects. On the other hand, teachers’ reflections on the students’ perceptions and attitudes about goals and content, and teachers’ conceptions of the students’ actions towards achieving the goals were studied least. Irrespective of the publication forum, the distributions of foci to different categories were quite similar. Our historical analysis completes the recent studies in the field as it is based on the theory driven categorization system instead of the data driven approaches used by the previous researchers. Moreover, our further observations on more recent publications suggest that no significant changes have taken place, and therefore wider discussion about the scope and the coverage of the research in science education is needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: meta study; didactical triangle; DFC method; research in science education meta study; didactical triangle; DFC method; research in science education
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Lampiselkä, J.; Kaasinen, A.; Kinnunen, P.; Malmi, L. Didactic Focus Areas in Science Education Research. Educ. Sci. 2019, 9, 294.

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