Forming explanations from evidence using the claim-evidence-reasoning framework
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While the students perform labs and get results, they do not take the time to carefully analyze the results and draw conclusions that relate the lab to the concepts that are being learned. The focus is on completing the lab itself and it is difficult to get them to draw connections to the concepts and use the scientific language in their conclusion writing. This classroom research project investigated whether explicitly teaching a conclusion writing framework increased students' capability to draw conclusions from the lab work as well as increase their understandings of the concepts. The claim-evidence-reasoning framework was used to teach the students conclusion writing protocol and help analyze data. After the framework was introduced, the students practiced with it. Then it was integrated into daily activities, like labs and journal check-ins. Data collection methods included lab reports, journals, conclusion practice, surveys, interviews, and a pre/post assessment. The data collection methods were aimed at determining if students' ability to analyze data and provide appropriate scientific reasoning improved, along with gauging their attitudes towards learning and understanding of the scientific concepts. There was no strong connection found between the use of the framework and students' ability to understand the concepts. The use of the framework did improve students' ability to make a claim and use evidence within conclusion writing, but the students' still struggled with the reasoning section. There was a shift towards students feeling more capable of using evidence and reasoning in their conclusion writing, but this did not translate to student confidence in conclusion writing.