Iterative Development of a Teaching-Learning Sequence on Acoustic Properties of Materials

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain

Supervisor: Dra. Digna Couso Lagarón and Dra. Roser Pintó Casulleras 

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The present doctoral dissertation explores diverse aspects of the process of iterative development of a teaching – learning sequence on the acoustic properties of materials. The different publications that are part of the compendium of the thesis focus on different stages of this process: design, enactment, evaluation, refinement and contribution to the design principles. Identifying which actions are carried out in each of these stages and which criteria and methods are used is the focus of this thesis.

This research study is based on the conviction that it is possible to promote secondary school students’ learning of this content, integrating research-generated knowledge and teachers’ experience, establishing links between the arenas of innovation and research. Nevertheless, this task is far from being obvious since interpreting and effectively implementing research results in educatioal practice is not immediate. For this reason, this thesis is focused on analysing the iterative development of a teaching – learning sequence in order to enhance its quality, understanding it as a set of assessable criteria such as validity, practicality and effectiveness.

With the purpose of carrying out this study, we analyzed classroom observations and written productions from different samples of 15-16 year-old students throughout the enactment of each version of the teaching – learning sequence during three consecutive academic years. We also took into account the notes taken during the meetings of the designer group, which was formed by researchers in science education and secondary school teachers who implemented the material in their classes. The analysis of these data allowed characterizing the process of refinement of the teaching sequence and describing the dynamics of students’ development of conceptual models, evaluating the influence of certain activities of the designed teaching sequence.

Thesis (Full reference)

Hernandez, Maria Isabel (2012): Iterative development of a teaching-learning sequence on acoustic properties of materials. Bellaterra: Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Department of Didactics of Mathematics and Experimental Sciences.

Journal articles in English

Hernández, M. I., Couso, D., & Pintó, R. (2011). The Analysis of Students’ Conceptions as a Support for Designing a Teaching/Learning Sequence on the Acoustic Properties of Materials. Journal of Science Education & Technology. doi 10.1007/s10956-011-9358-4.

Hernández, M. I., Couso, D., & Pintó, R. (2011). Teaching acoustic properties of materials in secondary school: Testing sound insulators. Physics Education, 46(5), 559-569.

Hernández, M. I., & Pintó, R. (in press). The process of iterative development of a teaching/learning sequence on acoustic properties of materials. In D. Psillos & P. Kariotoglou (Eds.), Iterative design of teaching-learning sequences: introducing the science of materials in European schools. The Netherlands: Springer Editorial.


Marisa Hernández

CRECIM - Centre de Recerca per a l'Educació Científica i Matemàtica

UAB - Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Campus UAB, Edifici GL, 304

08193, Bellaterra, Barcelona (SPAIN)

Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

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