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A Comparative study of Middle School Students' Images and Perceptions of Scientist, Technician and Engineer

과학자, 기술자, 공학자에 대한 중학생들의 이미지와 인식 비교

  • Received : 2011.08.04
  • Accepted : 2012.01.04
  • Published : 2012.02.29

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to analyse middle school students' images and perceptions about scientist, technician and engineer and to compare the images of male students with those of female students. Fralick et al.(2009)'s "Draw a scientist at work and draw an engineer at work" was modified and administered to 110 middle school 3rd grade students (43 male students, 67 female students) from 5 middle schools. They drew the figures at work and took explanation of what the person was doing in a drawing. The results of this study were as follows; First, the representative image of scientist was the man with glasses and lab gown performing the chemical experiment. There were no significant differences between the male students and female students in terms of the scientist images. Second, the representative image of technician was the man who was fixing a car and working with his hands. The technicians were illustrated as working with tools such as wrench, hammer and so on. There were no significant differences between the male students and female students in terms of the technician images. Third, the students involved in this study frequently perceived male engineers as working indoors. But perceptions about performance of engineers were significantly different between male students and female students. A majority of male students recognized that engineers should design, invent and create the products, however many female students perceived the engineers as car mechanics. Fourth, the students perceived differently the scientists' task compared with the technicians', but they had difficulty in distinguishing the scientists' task from the engineers' task.

Keywords

scientist;technician;engineer;images;perceptions;middle school students

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