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Inquiry and the National Science Education Standards: A Guide for Teaching and Learning
although in some cases modest, results across a variety of indicators. For example, studies of inquiry-oriented curriculum programs (Shymansky et al., 1983; Shymansky et al., 1990; Mechling and Oliver, 1983) demonstrated significant positive effects on various quantitative measures, including cognitive achievement, process skills, and attitudes toward science. (However, there was essentially no correlation between positive results and expert ratings of the degree of inquiry in the materials.) Wise and Okey (1983) showed a positive effect for what they called inquiry-discovery teaching for cognitive outcomes. Although Lott (1983) found only small differences between inductive and deductive approaches, the differences were in favor of the inductive approach, which incorporates elements of inquiry teaching and learning. Other meta-analyses conducted independently at approximately the same time, such as those by Weinstein et al. (1982) and Bredderman (1982), produced similar positive results. Studies in particular subject areas, such as biology (Hurd, 1998), also generally favored inquiry-based approaches.
Other studies have demonstrated a range of other specific outcomes from inquiry-based teaching, including vocabulary knowledge and conceptual understanding (Lloyd, 1988), critical thinking (Narode, 1987), inquiry abilities and physics understanding (White and Frederiksen, in press), and positive attitudes toward science (Shymansky et al., 1983). In studies of underrepresented and underserved populations, inquiry-oriented strategies enhanced scientific ways of thinking, talking, and writing for language learners and helped them to acquire English and reasoning skills (Rosebery et al., 1992).
David Haury (1993) has provided a brief, but thorough, summary of the above research. His review concludes that inquiry-oriented teaching can result in outcomes that include scientific literacy, familiarity with science processes, vocabulary knowledge,