This study examined the relationship between activity sequence and student outcomes in science instruction. Traditionally sequenced teacher learning units with lab activities late in activity sequence were compared to learning units with labs first in their activity sequence. A mixed-methods, quasi-experimental approach was used to test the effectiveness of a lab-first lesson approach suggested by the literature. Quantitative methods were used to assess content achievement; and qualitative methods were used to assess perception. No statistically significant difference was found between the approaches, although the researcher interpreted the results as suggesting some learning advantage for a lab-first approach. Although the teacher thought lab-first appeared to enhance learning, and students seemed to notice no difference during instruction, students preferred and thought they learned best with a lab-last approach. The teacher's view of the lab-first approach was positive; and he is inclined to continue to use it in his practice following the study.
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 51/01M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
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