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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to quantitatively synthesize quality and quantity of instruction studies with the same or similar independent variables in the published science education grade 6-12 research of the 1963-1978 period. Fifty-two studies formed six clusters and revealed significant positive cognitive outcomes due to the use of preinstructional strategies, training in scientific thinking, increased structure in the verbal content of materials, and increased realism or concreteness in adjunct materials. In general, systematic innovation in instruction was found to produce positive improvements over the norm or traditional practice. Methodologically, improved research design quality was related to larger effect sizes. Recommendations are made regarding application, use of multiple measures, attitudinal research, use of general education findings, and the reporting of research.