A study of urban middle school students with high and low attitudes toward science

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Abstract

Scientific literacy is essential to survive in this technological world, but it appears that scientific literacy is not of high priority for many students. This research project was undertaken to gather demographic data, intentions to engage in science, and attitudes of urban, middle school students. Scores on the Simpson-Troost Attitude Instrument were analyzed using the Statistical Analysis System. Results indicate less than 50% of the students come from high-school-graduated parents who work full-time to support the family. Less than 50% of these students indicate any interest to engage in science at the high school level, yet many plan to enter a science-related career. A majority of the students possess an uncertain attitude toward their science teachers and science curricula. However, all possessed high achievement motivations, strong positive attitudes toward their families, and high self-concepts.

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