Date of Award:

1975

Document Type:

Dissertation

Degree Name:

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department:

Education

Advisor/Chair:

Walter L. Saunders

Abstract

student achievement and attitude changes toward science resulting from three different approaches used in teaching introductory general education biology at Diablo Valley Community College in Pleasant Hill, California , were compared. The three teaching approaches used were the lecture-only, lecture - laboratory and lecture-recitation.

The sample was composed of 129 students enrolled in Biology 101 and 102 at Diablo Valley Community College during fall semester 1974-75. Forty-three students comprised the control group taught by the lecture-only method. Forty-three students comprised the experimental group taught by the lecture-laboratory method. Forty-three students comprised a second experimental group taught by the lecture-recitation method.

Student Achievement was measured using two subject matter achievement test. One test was the Nelson Biology Test consisting of 65 multiple-choice items. A reliability coefficient of .93 was established using the Kuder Richardson Formula 20. A second achievement test consisting of 100 multiple-choice questions was constructed by the investigator. A reliability coefficient of .89 was established using the Kuder Richardson Formula 20. Student attitude change toward science was measured using a Scientific Attitude Inventory constructed by Richard Moore at Temple University. A reliability coefficient of .73 was established using the Kuder Richardson Formula 20.

Analysis of covariance was used to compare mean posttest scores for the three groups involved in each hypothesis. The Scheffe' Test was used to make comparisons between pairs of group mean posttest scores. At the .05 level of significance, it was found that (1) students taught by the lecture-laboratory method had higher mean achievement scores than students taught by the lecture-only method when measured by either the Nelson Biology Test or the teacher-made test, (2) students taught by the lecture-laboratory method did not have significantly different mean achievement scores on the Nelson Biology Test than students taught by the lecture-recitation method, (3) students taught by the lecture-recitation method did not have significantly different mean achievement scores on the Nelson Biology Test or the teacher-made test than students taught by the lecture-only method when SCAT scores were used as the covariate, (4) students taught by the lecture-laboratory method had significantly higher mean achievement scores on the teacher-made test than students in the lecture-recitation group when SCAT scores were used as the covariate, (5) student attitudes toward science were not significantly different for the students taught by the lecture-laboratory method than for students taught by the lecture-recitation method as measured by the Scientific Attitude Inventory, and (6) students attitudes toward science were changed more favorably by the lecture-laboratory and lecture-recitation methods than by the lecture-only method as measured by the Scientific Attitude Inventory.

The results of this study suggest that students benefit when they experience a personal involvement with biological materials and laboratory equipment in investigating principles taught in the lecture portion of the course. The personal hands-on experience in designing and carrying out investigations in the laboratory helps students to more closely identify with the biology course and the work of the biologist. Results also suggest that students benefit by the extra time offered by the laboratory experience. Students achieve more and indicate a more favorable change in attitude toward science upon completion of the lecture-laboratory course than do students completing the lecture-only course or the lecture-recitation course.

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