Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Analogy in science education; Paleontology--Study and teaching (Middle school); Gifted children--Education (Middle school); Science--Study and teaching (Middle school); Fossils;


Twenty-eight identified gifted elementary to middle school students (n=28) (16 female, 12 male; 26 Caucasian, 1 Hispanic, and 1 Native American), participated in the study of Iowa fossils through form and function analogy compared to self-research of information on the Internet, and practiced new concepts through technology-rich or hands-on craft projects. This study compared using analogical thinking skills along with technology skills to determine the effects on science learning in the elementary gifted classroom. Analogical thinking or teaching is a method recognized as a valuable source of new ideas, a way to transfer previous knowledge to solve new problems. Content learning, creativity, and enjoyment of learning were key assessment points in this study that compared analogical and non-analogical instruction. This study found instruction highlighting analogy enhanced creativity in products. This study also found students preferred creating hands-on projects more than creating computer technology projects. They felt restricted in their creativity by the technology. The highest rate of recall of scientific knowledge in regards to an organism's body parts was produced through model-making of the organism studied.

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Audrey C. Rule


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Date Original


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