Scientific Argumentation in Biology: 30 Classroom Activities

NSTA Press Book (also see downloadable pdf version of this book) by: Victor Sampson and Sharon Schleigh

“Individuals who are proficient in science should be able to understand the language of science and participate in scientific practices, such as inquiry and argumentation. Empirical research, however, indicates that many students do not develop this knowledge or these abilities in school. One way to address this problem is to give students more opportunities to engage in scientific argumentation as part of the teaching and learning of science. This book will help teachers with this task.” —Authors Victor Sampson and Sharon Schleigh

Develop your high school students’ understanding of argumentation and evidence-based reasoning with this comprehensive book. Like three guides in one, Scientific Argumentation in Biology combines theory, practice, and biology content.

It starts by giving you solid background in why students need to be able to go beyond expressing mere opinions when making research-related biology claims. Then it provides 30 thoroughly field-tested activities your students can use when learning to:
• propose, support, and evaluate claims;
• validate or refute them on the basis of scientific reasoning; and
• craft complex written arguments.

Detailed teacher notes suggest specific ways in which you can use the activities to enrich and supplement (not replace) what you’re doing in biology class already.
Scientific Argumentation is an invaluable resource for learning more about argumentation and designing related lessons. You'll find it ideal for helping your students learn standards-based content; improve their biological practices; explain, interpret, and evaluate evidence; and acquire the habits of mind to become more proficient in science.

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Reviews (2)
  • on Thu May 12, 2016 11:59 AM

This book is thick, organized, and complete. It has three broad categories: generate an argument, evaluate alternatives, and refutational writing. Students work up the categories as their inquiry becomes more sophisticated. Each activity includes suggested materials for different classroom sizes and types, work samples, background, ideas for student work sheets for their notebooks, background, and standards. I think this may be my favorite book from the NSTA Press.

Barbara F
Barbara F

  • on Fri Mar 04, 2016 6:33 PM

I love using this in my on level and honors biology courses. It is so easy to use at the honors level (9th grade) and can be used with simple modifications in an on level course. The students have grown so much with their critical thinking skills this year!

Carrie S  (Duluth, GA)
Carrie S (Duluth, GA)

$31.96 - NSTA Members

$39.95 - Nonmembers

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