Document Type


Date of Degree

Fall 2014

Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)

Degree In

Teaching and Learning

First Advisor

Brian Hand


This study examined low and high level teachers' questioning patterns and classroom implementations within an argument-based inquiry approach known as the Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) approach, which addresses issues on negotiation, argumentation, learning, and teaching. The level of the teachers was determined by the students' writing scores. This study was conducted in Turkey with seven teacher for preliminary study. Because scoring writing samples examines the students' negotiation level with the different sources and students learn scientific process, as negotiation, which they may transfer into their writing, in classroom, two teachers were selected to represent low and high level teachers. Data collection involved classroom observation through video recordings. The comparative qualitative method was employed throughout the data analysis process with including quantitative results. The research questions that guided the present study were: (1) How are low and high level teachers, determined according to their students' writing scores, questioning patterns different from each other during classroom discourse? (2) Is there a relationship between students' writings and teachers' questioning styles in the classroom? Analysis of Qualitative data showed that teachers' classroom implementations reveal big differences based on argumentation patterns. The high level teacher, whose students had high scores in writing samples, asked more questions and the cognitive levels of questions were higher than the low level teacher. Questions promote an argumentative environment and improve critical thinking skills by discussing different ideas and claims. Asking more questions of teacher influences students to initiate (ask questions) more and to learn the scientific process with science concepts. Implicitly, this learning may improve students' comparison in their writing. Moreover, high level teacher had a more structured and organized classroom than low level teacher.

Public Abstract

This study examines teachers’ implementation of argument-based inquiry in their science classroom. Argument-based inquiry approach is a kind of active learning where the students behave like real scientist. Argument-based inquiry approach means that students start with a question which they want to ask about the topic, then do their experiment to answer their question. Findings are used as evidence to support their claims. Moreover they discuss and negotiate about their findings. In the preliminary study, students’ writing samples were scored according to their compare and contrast quality between their findings and different sources. The scores of the writing samples are assumed as an indicator of their negotiation quality. While learning the context of science in the classroom, students learn the process of negotiation; thus, students’ writings reflect their learning of negotiation. According to results of writing samples, the teachers are classified and two of them selected to represent low and high implementation of argumentation. In the main study, these two teachers’ classroom talking and questioning patterns are compared. The analysis of qualitative data shows that (1) high level teacher asked more question, (2) asking more questions of teacher influenced their students to ask more question and learn scientific process, and (3) high level teacher had a more structured and organized classroom than low level teacher. These results can help science teachers who are eager to implement argumentation in their classrooms. They need to be more organized, ask more questions to support their students to talk, and let their students to ask questions to each other.


publicabstract, argumentation, questioning, science teaching, teacher education


ix, 83 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 76-83).


Copyright 2014 Ali Cikmaz