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Title: History of Science in Science Education: the Case of Oersted’s Experiment
Authors: Valente, Mariana
Caldeira, Nazaré
Keywords: História da Ciência,
History of Science,
Oersted's experiment,
Oersted's Experiment,
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: 4th International Conference of the European Society for the History of Science
Citation: Valente, M., Caldeira, N. (2010). History of Science in Science Education: the Case of Oersted’s Experiment. 4th International Conference of the European Society for the History of Science. Barcelona.
Abstract: In April 1820,Oersted gave a lecture, at the University of Copenhagen, on the connections between the phenomena of electricity, galvanism and magnetism. During this lecture something happened that put him on a path towards the clarification of his ideas. In July 1820, he published his findings in a paper written in Latin which he sent to various scientists in Europe. This experiment is regarded as being at the origin of the phenomena, and of the theory of electromagnetism. What happened? Some studies in the field of the History of Science and in Science Education provide us with elements to reflect on the matter (Andrade Martins, 1986, 2003, 2007; Heering, 2000; Kipnis, 2005; Jacobsen, 2006; Friedman, 2007; Brain, 2007, Cavicchi, 2008). How is this experiment treated in secondary school textbooks? Today, in Portugal, it is presented in passing and without even naming Oersted. Time acts on ideas, in science education, in a dispersive manner: we loose a great deal of their significance and sometimes we use ideas that were previous to the experiment as if they were a consequence of the same, as we will show. Why is it important, today, to recreate some historical experiments, in the context of science education? At a time where the discussion about the nature of science is very important, we can improve science education in this sense using eyes, hands, hearts and minds. Experiments in science education are conducted as if they are all of the same nature. Using Oersted’s experiment we can make a difference, by introducing some of his ideas about the place of experiments in knowing Nature. His ‘romantic’ science can prove precious in the context of science education. The main purpose of our presentation is to show how this can be done and to answer the questions we have raised.
Type: lecture
Appears in Collections:CEHFC - Comunicações - Em Congressos Científicos Internacionais

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