Vol. 19 (2012)
Articles

What are Upper Primary School Students' Perceptions of Science?: The Trinidad and Tobago Context

Rawatee Maharaj-Sharma
The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus
Bio

Keywords

  • Primary School Students,
  • Science Education,
  • Primary School Science,
  • Student Attitudes,
  • Perception,
  • Trinidad and Tobago
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Abstract

In this study, 840 9- to 12-year-old upper primary students from schools across Trinidad and Tobago were surveyed to determine their perceptions of science, and to explore their views about the likeability of science. It was found that the students' perceptions of science were wide ranging, and that these perceptions were linked in large part to the way that science is delivered at the upper primary level. In general, students expressed high levels of liking for the discipline when it is delivered to them using practical hands-on approaches. This study also showed that there were differences in the perceptions held by boys and those held by girls, and that these differences were linked to certain science topics. It was also found that certain science topics were highly favoured by the students, and that the topics favoured varied with students' gender, age, and ability.