CORRELATES OF CONCEPTUAL KNOWLEDGE OF SCIENCE PROCESSES WITH SOME DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES OF UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS: THE CASE OF UNIVERSITY OF BOTSWANA
Authors: Hezekiah Ukegbu Emereole
Number of views: 233
The conceptual knowledge of the science process of University of Botswana science students was sought through a questionnaire. Copies of the questionnaire were administered during briefing laboratory sessions in which the students had no practical lab work to do. The expressed conceptual knowledge was scored using a validated list of definitions of science processes. The analysis revealed that there was no correlation between the students’ conceptual knowledge of the processes and their demographic variables of gender, age, present programme of study, year of study, desired profession, secondary school science programme followed, their school and home environments. Their ability to provide correct conceptual definitions did not corroborate their stated level of familiarity with the science processes. No student gave correct definitions for three of the science processes, only 3% and less could give correct definitions for 10 of the 15 processes, and only for the processes of classification and communication were the percentages of correct definitions up to 23.3% and 8.2% respectively. It was suggested that science educators at all levels should ensure that their students acquire both conceptual and practical knowledge of the science processes.