Science identity development: how multimodal composition mediates student role-taking as scientist in a media-rich learning environment

Shiyan Jiang, Ji Shen, Blaine E. Smith, Kristin Watson Kibler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Science identity has been widely discussed in recent years; however, research on its development in multimodal composing environments, especially in formal classroom settings, has yet to be fully investigated. This qualitative study unraveled the science identity development of sixth-grade students as they created multimodal science fiction stories in a STEAM course. Thirty-two students enrolled in the course and worked in groups of 3–5, and each student self-selected one of three roles: designer, scientist, or writer. This study focused on the students (n = 9) who took the role of scientist and examined their science identity development. Data sources include digital surveys, semi-structured group interviews, and multimodal artifacts. Our qualitative analysis suggests that (a) composing with modes of choices could drive interests in science; (b) students connected science practices in classrooms with those in professional domains through taking the role of scientist; (c) taking hybrid roles (i.e., a combination of scientist and other roles) while composing with multiple modes contributed to the recognition of science in non-science careers. Based on these findings, we discuss the implications for cultivating positive science identities and engaging early adolescents in career exploration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3187-3212
Number of pages26
JournalEducational Technology Research and Development
Volume68
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2020

Keywords

  • Career exploration
  • Multimodal composing
  • Role-taking
  • Science identity
  • Science practice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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