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Theorizing scientific literacy in the wild


Educational Research Review Volume 5, Number 2, ISSN 1747-938X Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


The purpose of this review paper is to contribute to the effort of rethinking scientific literacy in a form that is appropriate for describing and theorizing its occurrence “in the wild,” that is, in the everyday world that we share with others (as opposed to testing situations in classrooms and laboratories). Consistent with our commitment to practice, we exemplify relevant theories of everyday cognition with a case study of scientific literacy in the wild. Accordingly, we conceive scientific literacy as situated, distributed, and dynamic. We use this case study as a touchstone for reviewing the literature on scientific literacy as it has been developed over the past 50 years. Our review shows that sociocultural and cultural-historical activity theoretic models of knowing account for scientific literacy in the wild better than other theories. If the purpose of science education is to produce a scientifically literate citizenry, the question now can be asked what these models propose to frame school science and the possible trajectories that might lead to scientific literacy in the wild.


van Eijck, M. & Roth, W.M. (2010). Theorizing scientific literacy in the wild. Educational Research Review, 5(2), 184-194. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved February 17, 2020 from .

This record was imported from Educational Research Review on January 29, 2019. Educational Research Review is a publication of Elsevier.

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