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Volume 4 (2021): Issue 1 (December 2021)

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Volume 2 (2019): Issue 1 (December 2019)

Volume 1 (2018): Issue 1 (December 2018)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
2616-7697
First Published
20 Apr 2018
Publication timeframe
1 time per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 1 (2018): Issue 1 (December 2018)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
2616-7697
First Published
20 Apr 2018
Publication timeframe
1 time per year
Languages
English

Search

12 Articles
Open Access

Editorial

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 1 - 3

Abstract

Open Access

Editorial: RISTAL - the new interdisciplinary and international Journal

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 1 - 3

Abstract

Open Access

Comparing and combining research approaches to empirically inform the design of subject-matter interventions: the case of fostering language learners’ strategies for word problems

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 4 - 18

Abstract

Abstract

Most research approaches in subject-matter education aim at informing the design of subject-matter interventions and the work of teachers in subject-matter classrooms. However, different research foci result in it being done in a more or less direct form, and conclusions that are too far reaching are often drawn that are not covered by the research study. In particular, few research questions also address the WHAT-question (What exactly must be learned?) rather than only the HOW-question (How can it be learned most effectively?). This article examines the exemplary field of fostering language learners’ reading strategies in subject-matter classrooms in order to compare what different research approaches can contribute and how they must be combined in order to provide a substantial foundation for the design of language-responsive classrooms from multiple perspectives. Using design research, language demands can be specified in subject-matter learning situations; it turns out to be crucial to take this research step before designing and evaluation interventions.

Keywords

  • Language proficiency
  • subject-matter achievement
  • design principles for fostering language learners
  • research approaches
  • subject specificity
Open Access

Confronting subject matter education with memorial pedagogy. Guides at memorial sites and Holocaust museums

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 19 - 34

Abstract

Abstract

Teaching and learning about the Holocaust and Nazi crimes is an interdisciplinary and diverse field with many different stakeholders as well as various educational concepts and programs. If this topic is looked at from the perspective of formal subject matter education, especially history and language education are of concern. In the perspective of non-formal education memorial pedagogy [Gedenkstättenpädagogik] offers a wide range of methods. In this article, the guides at concentration camp memorial sites and Holocaust museums in Europe and the US shall be examined in greater detail: This group of people carries out crucial educational work – which often is overlooked. Guides represent a crucial point between institutions and visitors, between the past and the present, and between formal and non-formal education. Based on a variety of qualitative empirical data, like interviews with guides and pedagogical staff, analysis of educational materials and field studies at the sites, a typology of guides is developed following the methodology of Grounded Theory. The research focuses on how guides contribute to passing down the history of the Holocaust and Nazi crimes to visitors by leading their tours and how their perspectives can be reflected upon formal subject matter education of history and language.

Keywords

  • History and literature classes
  • guides
  • Holocaust related sites
  • Grounded Theory
Open Access

How research-based learning can increase teacher students’ knowledge and abilities – a design-based research project in the context of pupils’ (mis)conceptions in science

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 35 - 50

Abstract

Abstract

The beliefs and preconceptions that pupils bring into the classroom influence their understanding of scientific topics. Empirical studies show that many teachers know little about pupils’ (mis)conceptions and are therefore unequipped to handle them in an appropriate way. The design-based research project presented in this article describes the development and evaluation of a seminar in the didactic education of chemistry teachers. This seminar introduces teacher students to the topic of pupils’ conceptions according to the principle of research-based learning. The seminar is based on an expert-validated model of knowledge and skills that teachers need in the context of pupils’ conceptions. Furthermore, the article describes a structural model of design-based research (DBR) that can be used for structuring DBR projects. The article concludes by presenting a theory development derived from the evaluation results and their theoretical embedding which describes how subjective theories can be affected and changed by research-based learning.

Keywords

  • Design-based Research
  • pupils’ (mis)conceptions
  • research-based learning
  • teacher beliefs
Open Access

Inquiry-based learning and secondary chemistry education – a contradiction?

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 51 - 65

Abstract

Abstract

Even though inquiry-based learning (IBL) has been a component of various curricula and standards for more than ten years and its implementation has been supported by several funding programs, it is still applied only rarely. The reasons for this are not only frequently mentioned obstacles, but also the teachers’ beliefs regarding IBL. In this article, it is exemplified what IBL means to five Austrian chemistry teachers and what contradictions between IBL and the curriculum emerge from this. For this purpose, a group discussion is analyzed to discern what teachers think IBL is. The results are contrasted with relevant literature as well as with the Austrian curriculum for chemistry. The findings are finally used to derive implications for designing an appropriate professional development program.

Keywords

  • inquiry-based learning
  • chemistry education
  • curriculum
  • professional development
  • beliefs
Open Access

A cross-subject content analysis of science textbooks using the understandings about scientific inquiry rubrics

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 66 - 81

Abstract

Abstract

Recent empirical research has shown that students’ inquiry competence can be improved, when they are explicitly taught understandings about scientific inquiry (USI). However, there is little research on the USI content taught in high schools. Examining Science textbooks is one way of identifying what might be taught in the classroom. The aim of this paper is to analyse the content of German science textbooks regarding their USI content. To do so, the understandings about scientific inquiry rubrics (USIR) were developed, validated and applied to a sample of n = 789 texts from n = 13 German textbooks for high school science. The results show that most textbooks dedicate one specific page to USI. The breadth of statements is relatively narrow. For researchers, the USIR present an instrument for the content analysis of instruction materials and learning environments. For teachers and curriculum developers they can be used as an instrument to enrich the content of textbooks, instruction materials and presentations.

Keywords

  • Scientific practice
  • scientific inquiry
  • understandings about scientific inquiry
  • qualitative content analysis
  • textbooks
Open Access

Between scientism and relativism: epistemic competence as an important aim in science and philosophy education

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 82 - 101

Abstract

Abstract

There is an ongoing cultural struggle regarding the reach and boundaries of science. Central questions discussed in this debate are for example: What is the essence of natural science? Is its claim for epistemic superiority justified?

As the dispute is not only academic but lies behind several life-world relevant issues as well, we believe that it is essential both to science education and philosophy education. As the topic is inherently interdisciplinary, we claim that the didactics of science and philosophy should work jointly to establish a model of epistemic competence and develop concepts that facilitate such a model. We make a proposal for the structure of epistemic competence as a basis for discussion.

Keywords

  • Epistemic Competence
  • Science Education
  • Philosophical Education
  • NOS
  • Scientism
  • Relativism
Open Access

The structure of teacher knowledge in religious education. A qualitative reconstruction of the knowledge teachers refer to in planning religious education

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 102 - 116

Abstract

Abstract

Professional knowledge is a prominent topic of research in subject specific didactics that originated from mathematics education. In the discourse on religious education, however, there are no empirical studies to reconstruct such knowledge bottom-up from religion teachers’ practice. This paper addresses that desideratum and investigates the suitability of the concept of professional knowledge for religious education. Theoretically based on Baumert and Kunter’s structural model of teacher knowledge (2006) and empirically conducted through Problem-Centered Interviews (Witzel 2000) with three religion teachers after planning an instructional sequence on Jesus Christ it elaborates a tentative structural model of religion teacher knowledge. According to the empirical results reconstructed by Qualitative Content Analysis (Mayring 2000), the concept of CK has to be amended by an epistemological dimension. PCK in the domain of religious education is more about instructional principles than instructional strategies and includes the teachers’ perspective on the instructed topic. In consequence, the tentative structural model of religions teacher knowledge supports the assumption that such knowledge is domain specific.

Keywords

  • religious education
  • teacher knowledge
  • content knowledge
  • pedagogical content knowledge
  • qualitative content analysis method
Open Access

Lesson Study research and initial teacher education: how to teach interactive speaking in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in primary school?

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 117 - 132

Abstract

Abstract

Our contribution presents an experimental course project developed by teacher educators and student teachers from two partner institutions (Switzerland and France) in a collaborative study. The research group objective was to implement a Lesson Study seeking to improve interactive activities for young EFL learners at primary level. Each research lesson included a pairwork activity, which contributes to enhance English speaking time for every learner in class. Our analyses of two research lessons show a marked improvement in the way the student teachers implemented the key-phases of an EFL lesson integrating an oral pairwork activity. By combining research work in the academic institution with teaching experience in schools, Lesson Study seems to be an efficient way of helping student teachers acquire professional skills and didactic knowledge.

Keywords

  • Lesson Study
  • Didactics of English as a Foreign Language (EFL)
  • Joint Action Theory in Didactics (JATD)
  • Pairwork activity
  • Initial teacher education (ITE)
Open Access

Collaborative epistemic writing and writing-to-learn in mathematics: can it foster mathematical argumentation competence?

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 133 - 147

Abstract

Abstract

Writing is not only a tool for communication but can assist in generating, elaborating and structuring knowledge, which is commonly referred to as writing-to-learn. This can be beneficial in many mathematical learning processes. However, most research on mathematical writing has focused on individual writing-to-learn in problem solving activities. In contrast, only few studies considered possible benefits for the fostering of mathematical argumentation and proving, particularly when writing-to-learn occurs in collaboration. We review fundamental principles of writing-to-learn in mathematics education and elaborate how it could be implemented in collaborative learning settings. We refer to previous research on fostering mathematical argumentation skills as well as to theories of writing-to-learn from other areas within mathematics education. Finally, we provide guidelines for designing collaborative knowledge-constituting writing activities, discussing the importance of prompts and guidance.

Keywords

  • epistemic writing
  • writing-to-learn
  • mathematical writing
  • collaborative learning
  • mathematical argumentation
  • heuristic worked examples
  • collaboration scripts
Open Access

Subject Didactics and Educational Sciences: Relationships and Their Implications for Teacher Education from the Viewpoint of Educational Sciences

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 150 - 164

Abstract

Abstract

The quality of teacher education is closely linked to the relationship between its core elements — scientific disciplines, educational sciences, subject didactics and practical training. This article uses examples to describe the different relationships between subject didactics (elements of subject-matter teaching and learning) and educational sciences in Germany. Theories of professionalism in the teaching profession are proposed as a possible way to promote dialogue between the two elements while still taking their autonomy into account. The enhanced scientific dialogue between both elements could inspire teacher education that benefits from a stronger interrelation.

Keywords

  • subject didactics
  • educational sciences
  • teacher education
  • professionalization
  • meta-reflexivity
12 Articles
Open Access

Editorial

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 1 - 3

Abstract

Open Access

Editorial: RISTAL - the new interdisciplinary and international Journal

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 1 - 3

Abstract

Open Access

Comparing and combining research approaches to empirically inform the design of subject-matter interventions: the case of fostering language learners’ strategies for word problems

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 4 - 18

Abstract

Abstract

Most research approaches in subject-matter education aim at informing the design of subject-matter interventions and the work of teachers in subject-matter classrooms. However, different research foci result in it being done in a more or less direct form, and conclusions that are too far reaching are often drawn that are not covered by the research study. In particular, few research questions also address the WHAT-question (What exactly must be learned?) rather than only the HOW-question (How can it be learned most effectively?). This article examines the exemplary field of fostering language learners’ reading strategies in subject-matter classrooms in order to compare what different research approaches can contribute and how they must be combined in order to provide a substantial foundation for the design of language-responsive classrooms from multiple perspectives. Using design research, language demands can be specified in subject-matter learning situations; it turns out to be crucial to take this research step before designing and evaluation interventions.

Keywords

  • Language proficiency
  • subject-matter achievement
  • design principles for fostering language learners
  • research approaches
  • subject specificity
Open Access

Confronting subject matter education with memorial pedagogy. Guides at memorial sites and Holocaust museums

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 19 - 34

Abstract

Abstract

Teaching and learning about the Holocaust and Nazi crimes is an interdisciplinary and diverse field with many different stakeholders as well as various educational concepts and programs. If this topic is looked at from the perspective of formal subject matter education, especially history and language education are of concern. In the perspective of non-formal education memorial pedagogy [Gedenkstättenpädagogik] offers a wide range of methods. In this article, the guides at concentration camp memorial sites and Holocaust museums in Europe and the US shall be examined in greater detail: This group of people carries out crucial educational work – which often is overlooked. Guides represent a crucial point between institutions and visitors, between the past and the present, and between formal and non-formal education. Based on a variety of qualitative empirical data, like interviews with guides and pedagogical staff, analysis of educational materials and field studies at the sites, a typology of guides is developed following the methodology of Grounded Theory. The research focuses on how guides contribute to passing down the history of the Holocaust and Nazi crimes to visitors by leading their tours and how their perspectives can be reflected upon formal subject matter education of history and language.

Keywords

  • History and literature classes
  • guides
  • Holocaust related sites
  • Grounded Theory
Open Access

How research-based learning can increase teacher students’ knowledge and abilities – a design-based research project in the context of pupils’ (mis)conceptions in science

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 35 - 50

Abstract

Abstract

The beliefs and preconceptions that pupils bring into the classroom influence their understanding of scientific topics. Empirical studies show that many teachers know little about pupils’ (mis)conceptions and are therefore unequipped to handle them in an appropriate way. The design-based research project presented in this article describes the development and evaluation of a seminar in the didactic education of chemistry teachers. This seminar introduces teacher students to the topic of pupils’ conceptions according to the principle of research-based learning. The seminar is based on an expert-validated model of knowledge and skills that teachers need in the context of pupils’ conceptions. Furthermore, the article describes a structural model of design-based research (DBR) that can be used for structuring DBR projects. The article concludes by presenting a theory development derived from the evaluation results and their theoretical embedding which describes how subjective theories can be affected and changed by research-based learning.

Keywords

  • Design-based Research
  • pupils’ (mis)conceptions
  • research-based learning
  • teacher beliefs
Open Access

Inquiry-based learning and secondary chemistry education – a contradiction?

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 51 - 65

Abstract

Abstract

Even though inquiry-based learning (IBL) has been a component of various curricula and standards for more than ten years and its implementation has been supported by several funding programs, it is still applied only rarely. The reasons for this are not only frequently mentioned obstacles, but also the teachers’ beliefs regarding IBL. In this article, it is exemplified what IBL means to five Austrian chemistry teachers and what contradictions between IBL and the curriculum emerge from this. For this purpose, a group discussion is analyzed to discern what teachers think IBL is. The results are contrasted with relevant literature as well as with the Austrian curriculum for chemistry. The findings are finally used to derive implications for designing an appropriate professional development program.

Keywords

  • inquiry-based learning
  • chemistry education
  • curriculum
  • professional development
  • beliefs
Open Access

A cross-subject content analysis of science textbooks using the understandings about scientific inquiry rubrics

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 66 - 81

Abstract

Abstract

Recent empirical research has shown that students’ inquiry competence can be improved, when they are explicitly taught understandings about scientific inquiry (USI). However, there is little research on the USI content taught in high schools. Examining Science textbooks is one way of identifying what might be taught in the classroom. The aim of this paper is to analyse the content of German science textbooks regarding their USI content. To do so, the understandings about scientific inquiry rubrics (USIR) were developed, validated and applied to a sample of n = 789 texts from n = 13 German textbooks for high school science. The results show that most textbooks dedicate one specific page to USI. The breadth of statements is relatively narrow. For researchers, the USIR present an instrument for the content analysis of instruction materials and learning environments. For teachers and curriculum developers they can be used as an instrument to enrich the content of textbooks, instruction materials and presentations.

Keywords

  • Scientific practice
  • scientific inquiry
  • understandings about scientific inquiry
  • qualitative content analysis
  • textbooks
Open Access

Between scientism and relativism: epistemic competence as an important aim in science and philosophy education

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 82 - 101

Abstract

Abstract

There is an ongoing cultural struggle regarding the reach and boundaries of science. Central questions discussed in this debate are for example: What is the essence of natural science? Is its claim for epistemic superiority justified?

As the dispute is not only academic but lies behind several life-world relevant issues as well, we believe that it is essential both to science education and philosophy education. As the topic is inherently interdisciplinary, we claim that the didactics of science and philosophy should work jointly to establish a model of epistemic competence and develop concepts that facilitate such a model. We make a proposal for the structure of epistemic competence as a basis for discussion.

Keywords

  • Epistemic Competence
  • Science Education
  • Philosophical Education
  • NOS
  • Scientism
  • Relativism
Open Access

The structure of teacher knowledge in religious education. A qualitative reconstruction of the knowledge teachers refer to in planning religious education

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 102 - 116

Abstract

Abstract

Professional knowledge is a prominent topic of research in subject specific didactics that originated from mathematics education. In the discourse on religious education, however, there are no empirical studies to reconstruct such knowledge bottom-up from religion teachers’ practice. This paper addresses that desideratum and investigates the suitability of the concept of professional knowledge for religious education. Theoretically based on Baumert and Kunter’s structural model of teacher knowledge (2006) and empirically conducted through Problem-Centered Interviews (Witzel 2000) with three religion teachers after planning an instructional sequence on Jesus Christ it elaborates a tentative structural model of religion teacher knowledge. According to the empirical results reconstructed by Qualitative Content Analysis (Mayring 2000), the concept of CK has to be amended by an epistemological dimension. PCK in the domain of religious education is more about instructional principles than instructional strategies and includes the teachers’ perspective on the instructed topic. In consequence, the tentative structural model of religions teacher knowledge supports the assumption that such knowledge is domain specific.

Keywords

  • religious education
  • teacher knowledge
  • content knowledge
  • pedagogical content knowledge
  • qualitative content analysis method
Open Access

Lesson Study research and initial teacher education: how to teach interactive speaking in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in primary school?

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 117 - 132

Abstract

Abstract

Our contribution presents an experimental course project developed by teacher educators and student teachers from two partner institutions (Switzerland and France) in a collaborative study. The research group objective was to implement a Lesson Study seeking to improve interactive activities for young EFL learners at primary level. Each research lesson included a pairwork activity, which contributes to enhance English speaking time for every learner in class. Our analyses of two research lessons show a marked improvement in the way the student teachers implemented the key-phases of an EFL lesson integrating an oral pairwork activity. By combining research work in the academic institution with teaching experience in schools, Lesson Study seems to be an efficient way of helping student teachers acquire professional skills and didactic knowledge.

Keywords

  • Lesson Study
  • Didactics of English as a Foreign Language (EFL)
  • Joint Action Theory in Didactics (JATD)
  • Pairwork activity
  • Initial teacher education (ITE)
Open Access

Collaborative epistemic writing and writing-to-learn in mathematics: can it foster mathematical argumentation competence?

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 133 - 147

Abstract

Abstract

Writing is not only a tool for communication but can assist in generating, elaborating and structuring knowledge, which is commonly referred to as writing-to-learn. This can be beneficial in many mathematical learning processes. However, most research on mathematical writing has focused on individual writing-to-learn in problem solving activities. In contrast, only few studies considered possible benefits for the fostering of mathematical argumentation and proving, particularly when writing-to-learn occurs in collaboration. We review fundamental principles of writing-to-learn in mathematics education and elaborate how it could be implemented in collaborative learning settings. We refer to previous research on fostering mathematical argumentation skills as well as to theories of writing-to-learn from other areas within mathematics education. Finally, we provide guidelines for designing collaborative knowledge-constituting writing activities, discussing the importance of prompts and guidance.

Keywords

  • epistemic writing
  • writing-to-learn
  • mathematical writing
  • collaborative learning
  • mathematical argumentation
  • heuristic worked examples
  • collaboration scripts
Open Access

Subject Didactics and Educational Sciences: Relationships and Their Implications for Teacher Education from the Viewpoint of Educational Sciences

Published Online: 11 Jul 2022
Page range: 150 - 164

Abstract

Abstract

The quality of teacher education is closely linked to the relationship between its core elements — scientific disciplines, educational sciences, subject didactics and practical training. This article uses examples to describe the different relationships between subject didactics (elements of subject-matter teaching and learning) and educational sciences in Germany. Theories of professionalism in the teaching profession are proposed as a possible way to promote dialogue between the two elements while still taking their autonomy into account. The enhanced scientific dialogue between both elements could inspire teacher education that benefits from a stronger interrelation.

Keywords

  • subject didactics
  • educational sciences
  • teacher education
  • professionalization
  • meta-reflexivity

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