The development of scales to measure students', teachers' and scientists' views on STS.
Tedman, Debra K
Keeves, John Philip
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The starting point for this work on the development of scales was an existing instrument concerned with Views on Science, Technology and Society (STS) which had been prepared in Canada. This Australian study developed scales to measure views towards science, technology and society, and, it was necessary initially to specify scores to the alternative responses or views for each of the statements included in the scales used in this study. The initial scores or codes for the scales were based upon preliminary analysis and the researcher's judgment derived from a review of the literature. Subsequently, a validation study used the opinions of experts to confirm the numerical codes assigned to the responses. It was also necessary to test the items in each of the scales to see whether the model of a unidimensional scale was consistent with recorded data. It was possible to show that by using the numerical codes, the chosen items fitted well their respective scales. Once the three scales (a) effects of Society on Science and Technology (Society), (b) the effects of Science and Technology upon Society (Science), and (c) characteristics of Scientists (Scientists), had been specified and items were identified that satisfied the requirement of unidimensionality, it was possible to calibrate the three scales and the items within them using the partial credit model for Rasch scaling. The construction and calibration of these three scales permitted an investigation to proceed that involved the accurate measurement of students', teachers' and scientists' views on STS. [ Author abstract]