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In-Depth Investigation of Three Tasks

See how prior science knowledge relates to students' abilities to perform investigations

An extended interactive computer task (ICT) at grade 4, a short ICT at grade 8, and a hands-on task (HOT) at grade 12 were examined in-depth. Explore the results below to see how students' prior knowledge or ability to make predictions related to their ability to perform experiments and draw conclusions.

Grade 4 Mystery Plants

Students designed three investigations, made observations, and drew conclusions based on their data to learn that different types of plants may have different needs for sunlight and nutrients. The set of investigations moved from the expected outcome that a plant needs lots of sunlight to grow, to possibly unexpected outcomes that more sunlight or nutrients are not necessarily beneficial. The task required students to use science principles and scientific inquiry.

Grade 8 Bottling Honey

Students conducted simulated investigations of the effect of temperature on the flow of liquids, beginning with simple experiments and progressing to more complex ones. They determined the optimum temperature, within a given range, for bottling honey in the least amount of time while using the least energy. The task emphasized using scientific inquiry and technological design.

Grade 12 Maintaining Water Systems

Students selected the best site for building a new town based on the quality of the water supply. They conducted water tests, matched pollutants with the appropriate process in a water treatment plant, and described the scientific process by which each pollutant could be removed. The task was based on the framework practice of scientific inquiry and required the students to demonstrate their depth of scientific knowledge.

View grade 4 results





View grade 8 results

View grade 12 results