The nature and role of science kits in affecting change in public attitude toward understanding of science


Science kits have tremendous potential as effective instructional tools for changing the ways people think about science in both formal and informal contexts. However, they can also be a colossal waste of resources if design, implementation, and support are not appropriate. This chapter addresses science kits by first describing what a science kit is. Both commercial and noncommercial types of kits are discussed, including what they do and do not contain. Secondly, the chapter addresses the rationales for the use of kits. These rationales are based in the literature and focus on the efficacy of kits in the teaching and learning of science among diverse populations. Next, we will discuss two example cases of kit implementation. For each example, we will describe the context in which the kit was used and the total cost associated with implementation (both the cost of the kits and support structures including professional development), as well as discuss how the kit was incorporated into the current curriculum structure. Lastly, the chapter wraps up by exploring trends in kit development.

Publication Title

Communicating Science to the Public: Opportunities and Challenges for the Asia-Pacific Region