Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10497/22207
Title: 
Authors: 
Subjects: 
Knowledge of students
Language demands of science
Pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) for disciplinary practice
Teacher knowledge
Issue Date: 
2020
Citation: 
Seah, L. H., & Chan, K. K. H. (2020). A case study of a science teacher’s knowledge of students in relation to addressing the language demands of science. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 19, 267-287. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10763-019-10049-6
Abstract: 
Learning science encompasses learning the language of science, which can pose considerable challenges to students due to its specialized features and structures. Addressing the three-language problem (the need to transition between daily, general school and disciplinary languages) and the specific language demands of science thus constitutes part of the larger goal of promoting disciplinary literacy. Most studies have focused on the conceptual demands of science learning and have not examined what knowledge teachers require to support students’ learning of the language of science. In this study, we focus on science teachers’ knowledge of students (KS) for addressing the language demands of science. This qualitative case study has two aims: (1) to unpack a teacher’s KS related to their language use in science and (2) to uncover how this KS informs teaching practices. Transcripts of teacher interviews, lesson planning sessions and lessons drawn from two Grade 4 science classrooms taught by a primary science teacher constituted the data for this study. We identify five aspects of KS (i.e. prior knowledge of and about language, difficulties with language, abilities across modes of language and across subject areas and learning progress) that inform four distinct teaching practices. This case study highlights and unpacks a dimension of KS that is often overlooked in the current literature on pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) for science teaching. The implications to teachers’ PCK, science teaching and teacher professional development are discussed in light of the findings.
Description: 
This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education. The published version is available online at https://doi.org/10.1007/s10763-019-10049-6
URI: 
ISSN: 
1571-0068 (print)
1573-1774 (online)
DOI: 
Website: 
Grant ID: 
OER 65/12 SLH
Funding Agency: 
National Institute of Education, Singapore
File Permission: 
Open
File Availability: 
With file
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