About Inquiry-based Science Learning in STEM subjects Teaching and Learning

About Inquiry-based Science in STEM subjects Teaching and Learning

About Inquiry-based Science Learning in STEM subjects Teaching and Learning

Teaching according to the inquiry-based approach can stimulate students’ learning gains and their interest in science by formulation of questions, investigation, creation of a solution or an appropriate response, discussion and reflexion in connection with results.

In STEM case digital, interactive tools can be effectively used to achieve the subjects’ goals by really involving the learner in raising research questions, generating a hypothesis, designing experiments to verify them, constructing and analyzing evidence-based arguments, recognizing alternative explanations, and communicating scientific arguments.

Inquiry-based learning (IBL) is a method of instruction that places the student, the subject, and their interaction at the center of the learning experience.  At the same time, it transforms the role of the teacher from that of dispensing knowledge to one of facilitating learning.  It repositions him or her, physically, from the front and center of the classroom to someplace in the middle or back of it, as it subtly yet significantly increases his or her involvement in the thought-processes of the students [1].

By collaborating in pairs and groups, students can share ideas and thoughts and so they can reach deeper understanding, social development and interpersonal skills.

The outcomes of such learning activities are: more motivated students,  critical and higher order thinking, problem solving and deeper understanding of the world, good communication and collaborative skills, better retention of information, better, independent, adaptable and engaged students with research and analysis skills, more creativity and finally lifelong learners [2].

On balance, science, mathematics, and technology have advanced the quality of human existence, and students should become thoughtful supporters of them. But since science itself esteems independent thought so highly, it follows that teachers should not attempt to simply indoctrinate students into becoming uncritical supporters of science.

Rather, they should take the position that in achieving the goals, students will end up with balanced views of the value of science, mathematics, and technology, and not be either uncritically positive or antagonistic.

Education should prepare people to read or listen the assertions critically, deciding what evidence to pay attention to and what to dismiss, and distinguishing careful arguments from shoddy ones. Furthermore, people should be able to apply those same critical skills to their own observations, arguments, and conclusions, thereby becoming less bound by their own prejudices and rationalizations [3].


[1] Lee May, E (2013): Salisbury State University, The Academy of Inquiry Based Learning 2013, http://www.inquirybasedlearning.org/, accessed 2015

[2] Radu Jugureanu, Mihaela Garabet, Ana Maria Bâldea: International Conference on Virtual Learning 2015,  http://c3.icvl.eu/papers2015/icvl/documente/pdf/section2/section2_paper30.pdf

[3] http://www.project2061.org/publications/sfaa/online/chap12.htm#1#1, accessed 2016