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The Ripple Effect of Epistemological Framing: Linking Epistemology, Teacher Moves, and Student Learning

Mon, April 12, 9:30 to 11:00am EDT (9:30 to 11:00am EDT), SIG Sessions, SIG-Science Teaching and Learning Paper and Symposium Sessions


This work explores epistemological framing dynamics in a middle school biology classroom and how such dynamics shape student engagement and learning opportunities. Our data sources include student and teacher interviews, classroom videos of three multi-day lessons with a focus on argumentation, and work products collected across one academic year. Our analysis reveals that while the teacher made room for students to generate and negotiate ideas, brief but influential moves emphasizing single correct answers undermined students’ sensemaking. These instructional moves, while only occupying a small amount of instructional time, framed students’ sensemaking efforts not as a process to seek the strongest explanation from a number of possibilities, but rather to wait for the correct explanation to be revealed from an authority.