The Effect of Replicating Historical Scientific Apparatus on High School Students' Attitudes Towards Science and Their Understanding of Nature of Science

Alisir Z. N. , İrez O. S.

SCIENCE & EDUCATION, cilt.29, sa.5, ss.1201-1234, 2020 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier

  • Yayın Türü: Makale / Tam Makale
  • Cilt numarası: 29 Konu: 5
  • Basım Tarihi: 2020
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1007/s11191-020-00148-0
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.1201-1234


For many historians of science and science educators, the method of replicating historical scientific apparatus and experiments provides an avenue for science learning, promotes critical and independent thinking, and fosters a deeper understanding of the nature of scientific practice. This paper presents a research study where a group of high school students replicated various historical scientific apparatus, and reports the effects of this replication on students' understandings of nature of science and attitudes towards science. Further, the paper also reports on the accounts of the participants regarding the implementation. The participants of the study were nineteen 11th grade students from a high school in Istanbul, Turkey. The Scientific Attitude Inventory II and the Nature of Science Beliefs Questionnaire were utilized to investigate the effects of the implementation on participants' attitudes towards science and understanding of nature of science, respectively. Furthermore, semi-structured interviews were conducted with the participants to examine their experiences with and perspectives about the implementation. The results of the study suggest that the method of replicating historical scientific apparatus constituted an important approach to improving students' attitudes towards science, in addition to laying significant groundwork for helping students develop their understanding regarding some characteristics of science. Participants' accounts suggest that this method provided students with opportunities to acquire and develop social skills while learning science content. Limitations and shortcomings of the approach are also discussed.