- Volume 14 Issue 3
Four science concepts were selected from high school science textbook to investigate the differences in priorities of students knowledge activated during solving earth science problems in laboratory and earth science environmental contexts. Two items, one for laboratory context and the other for earth environmental context, were developed for earth selected concept The subjects were constituted of 192 students in 11th grade and 196 in 12th grade in one senior high school. Students' responses were categorized using graph models and analyzed in terms of 'Common Activated Knowledge'(CAK). and 'Specific Activated Knowledge'(SAK) across students' cognitive frames, grades, and sex. As contextual differences of the problems increased, context effects in priorities of CAK were reported in favor of laboratory context, on the contrary those of SAK in favor of earth environmental context. Context effects were reported across cognitive frames, especially students with laboratory cognitive frames showed more significant context effects than others. Lower graders and girls showed relatively large context effects. The results of this study showed that science concepts learned in a laboratory context are not easily transferred to earth environmental context. Therefore, special instructional strategies should be developed to overcome the context effect s according to activated knowledges with high priorities in laboratory and earth environmental context.