American Journal of Educational Research
ISSN (Print): 2327-6126 ISSN (Online): 2327-6150 Website: http://www.sciepub.com/journal/education Editor-in-chief: Ratko Pavlović
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American Journal of Educational Research. 2020, 8(1), 7-15
DOI: 10.12691/education-8-1-2
Open AccessArticle

Role-play Activities as a Framework for Developing Argumentation Skills on Biological Issues in Secondary Education

Angeliki Maniatakou1, Issidora Papassideri1 and Martha Georgiou1,

1Section of Cell Biology & Biophysics, Department of Biology, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece

Pub. Date: January 04, 2020

Cite this paper:
Angeliki Maniatakou, Issidora Papassideri and Martha Georgiou. Role-play Activities as a Framework for Developing Argumentation Skills on Biological Issues in Secondary Education. American Journal of Educational Research. 2020; 8(1):7-15. doi: 10.12691/education-8-1-2

Abstract

Argumentation is a necessary skill for every citizen in a modern democratic society. Although in recent years many countries have incorporated it into their science curricula, students have been experiencing difficulties in developing argumentative skills. Socio-scientific issues (SSI) and role-playing activities, are thought to constitute ideal frameworks for helping students overcome these difficulties. The purpose of this study is to examine the degree of which a role-playing activity created by 10th grade’s Greek State school students and relevant to an SSI from the field of Biology can enhance their argumentation skills. Students answered five open-ended questions, and their arguments were evaluated based on the Toulmin’s model. The results showed that despite the general low level of arguments provided by the students, there was an indicative improvement in the argumentation level of question number 3. This indicates that a creative role-playing activity which actively involves students can have a positive impact on the development of students’ argumentation skills. The increase in argumentation level was also reflected in the students' ability to construct stronger arguments during the activity, which has a promising interpretation.

Keywords:
argumentation socioscientific issues science education biology education creative role-playing vaccination

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