English secondary students’ thinking about the status of scientific theories: consistent, comprehensive, coherent and extensively evidenced explanations of aspects of the natural world – or just ‘an idea someone has’

@article{Taber2015EnglishSS,
  title={English secondary students’ thinking about the status of scientific theories: consistent, comprehensive, coherent and extensively evidenced explanations of aspects of the natural world – or just ‘an idea someone has’},
  author={K. Taber and B. Billingsley and F. Riga and H. Newdick},
  journal={The Curriculum Journal},
  year={2015},
  volume={26},
  pages={370 - 403}
}
Teaching about the nature of science (NOS) is seen as a priority for science education in many national contexts. The present paper focuses on one central issue in learning about NOS: understanding the nature and status of scientific theories. A key challenge in teaching about NOS is to persuade students that scientific knowledge is generally robust and reliable, yet also in principle always open to challenge and modification. Theories play a central role, as they are a form of conjectural… Expand
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