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You can’t investigate in a vacuum

Rosemary Hipkins and Faye Booker

This paper explores differences between scientists’ experiences of science and the investigations that are a common type of learning activity in school science. The first half of the paper makes a case for distinguishing between investigative processes that build new knowledge and those that help students learn knowledge that is only “new” for them. The second half of the paper examines the implications of this rethinking for the assessment of practical investigations – and in particular for the implementation of NCEA Achievement Standard 1.1 at Year 11. The approaches outlined have been used successfully in New Zealand classrooms.

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