Transforming Communities: Re-Imagining the Possibilities Through Equitable Science Teaching

Dr. Steele and colleagues from Ohio State University and University of Minnesota recently co-edited a special issue for JSTE where they explored what it means to engage in transformative science teaching and why transformative teaching be a cornerstone of science education? For us, transformation is about transformation of beliefs, values, attitudes, ways of knowing and learning, and behaviors that lead to a desire, willingness, and capacity to take actions for social justice and change.

This Special Issue explores empirical projects that recognize science as a tool that promotes transformational shifts toward a more just and equitable society. Collectively, these papers explore pedagogical decisions across P-16 science education where knowledges and practices of science are used to critically examine and question unjust policies and normalized practices that have negatively impacted teachers, students, and their communities.

Specifically, these papers examine practices that science teacher educators and science teachers are engaged in that foster transformative science teaching and learning. The contributions to the Special Issue are diverse linguistically, geographically, theoretically, and methodologically. Each paper draws from diverse theoretical frameworks, such as deliberative democracy (e.g., Gutmann & Thompson, Citation2004), liberation social psychology (Martín-Baró, Citation1996), culturally relevant pedagogy (Ladson-Billings, Citation2014), justice-centered science pedagogy (Morales‐Doyle, Citation2017), posthuman concepts (St. Pierre, Citation2016), and learning as becomings (Barad, Citation2007). Similarly, the contributors drew from multiple methodological traditions to explore science teacher and science teacher education such as qualitative study, case study (e.g., constructivist case study and narrative case study), conjecture mapping coupled with diffractive methodology.

The full editorial can be found here: