At-promise Students: a study of urban student learning in Alberta within the context of science education

  • Author / Creator
    Chahal, Monica M
  • As teachers and educators, we have power, be it destructive or supportive. As such, we have a duty to our students to understand their complexities. The purpose of my research which utilizes a Constructivist Grounded Theory methodology by means of a case study approach in the context of science education is not aimed at an improvement of performance, but rather hopes to provide a situational and contextual understanding of learning. Urban youth live a life in flux, in almost constant change. A place of learning needs to acknowledge this fluctuation, as place is merely the backdrop for the potential for relationship-building and, thus, learning. The breakthroughs that occurred as a result of this research were not because of the location in which the learning took place, but because an opportunity was presented to nurture the space for relationships within the places – a concept I have coined as‘s/place.’ Within the place of school, spaces exist for relationship-building and the creation of hybrid identities in which students’ multiple selves are acknowledged and thus s/place becomes the confluence of space and place. I conducted my research in an urban setting because students who live, study and work in urban environments are often overlooked. Their brilliance is dulled through a consistent grinding down of who they are and by being told that what they know is not valued. My hope is that my work demonstrates that change is not only possible but achievable if we are open to listening to the voices of the unheard and often overlooked youth in our classrooms.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Spring 2016
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Blades, David (Science Education & Curriculum Studies, University of Victoria)
    • Pegg, Jerine (Elementary Education)
    • Richardson, George (Secondary Education)
    • Kim, Mijung (Elementary Education)
    • Johnston, Ingrid (Secondary Education)