27 SES 16 B, How Do Science Textbooks Inspire and Support Effective Pedagogies? Analytical Frame and Coding Categories for Lower Secondary Science Student Books.
The textbook has many physical and structural characteristics, for instance the layout that is how the selected content is displayed in terms of quality and length. The logical structure is essential to understand and acquire the knowledge and skills. Illustrations used for demonstration, the use of typographical elements to emphasize key findings and the elements helping orientation (for example index of contents, page title) can make the learning process more successful. Literature gives a number of aspects of structure and appearance for critically evaluating a textbook. It does not always give a precise recommendation as to what a good textbook should look like. Some aspects, such as different strategies of introducing new scientific concepts can be relevant in comparing different textbooks. Our aim was to create a system of criteria by which strengths and weaknesses of textbooks are assessable in terms of structure and layout. Our focus is how they support the previously identified effective teaching and learning practices. Our evaluation framework contains a mixed approach of quantitative and qualitative indicators for structure and layout. For the sake of comparison, we examine the same topic (thermodynamics) in more detail in all four textbooks. At the same time, certain features are evaluated using randomly selected lessons or pages to provide a representative sample of the textbooks. We review the structure of a lesson, the introduction of new concepts, the way of highlighting key findings, and the features helping orientation. We examine the illustrations in terms of print quality, readability, function, quantity and quality, along with their relationship with the text. We will supplement our analysis with a questionnaire survey, in which we ask the opinion of a panel of experts in physics teaching and inspection about Hungarian language textbooks involved in the study. During the pilot analysis the methodology and the evaluation framework are expected to be refined. We hope that the evaluation of the 7th grade physics textbooks and the detailed comparative analysis will be helpful in textbook writing and textbook selection in the future.
Pléh Csaba (1998): A mondatmegértés a magyar nyelvben. Budapest: Osiris Kiadó. Yazdanmehr, E.-Shoghi, S. (2014): ‘Design and Application of a 'Textbook Visual Effects' Evaluation Checklist.’ in Theory and Practice in Language Studies, Vol. 4, No. 3, pp. 473-480.
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