Measuring students' continuing motivation for science learning

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Abstract

Continuing motivation for science learning may be manifested through engagement in extracurricular science-related activities, which are not the result of school or other external requirements. Very few articles have appeared in the last decade on this important aspect of science learning. This article presents a survey based on seven Likert-type items for measuring adolescents' continuing motivation for science. It describes how the survey was developed, tested, and used to explore the relations between school type, grade, and gender and adolescents' continuing motivation for science learning. Data on the continuing motivation of 2,958 Israeli 5th–8th grade students, from traditional and democratic schools, were collected and analyzed using polytomous Rasch techniques and hierarchical linear modeling. The results indicate that in both types of schools girls had lower continuing motivation for science than boys, and that while the continuing motivation of both boys and girls in traditional schools decreased between 5th and 8th grade, the continuing motivation of students in democratic schools remained constant during this period. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Res Sci Teach 51: 497–522, 2014

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