Most would agree that, to be effective, teachers of science need to know their subject matter. Yet how we define science subject matter is of increasing concern in the science education community. According to national policy documents, the subject matter of science includes not only the central concepts and principles of science, but also its tools of inquiry and the structure of the discipline. In this talk, I will explore this broad definition of science subject matter through examining undergraduate instruction about phases of the moon
Sandra K. Abell is Professor of Science Education in the School of Education at Purdue University, where she teaches future and practicing elementary science teachers and graduate students in science education. Abell's research focuses on the process of becoming an elementary science teacher, from the teacher preparation program into the beginning years of teaching, and throughout one's teaching career. Her research uses methods of naturalistic inquiry and typically involves collaboration with school-based colleagues. Abell has received numerous teaching awards from Purdue, the Association for the Education of Teaching in Science, and the National Science Teachers Association. She currently is President-Elect of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching.