Student and School Level Variables related to Elementary School Students’ Attitudes towards Science

Akdeniz University, TURKEY.
DOI: 10.14689/ejer.2019.80.4


Purpose: In the literature, there are lots of quantitative studies regarding students’ attitudes, and results of the studies revealed that students have negative attitudes towards science. Therefore, it is necessary to study the factors that predict the attitudes of the students towards science taking into account the factors at both the school and the student level. The purpose of this study was to investigate what school- and student-level factors are associated with student’ attitudes towards science.

Research Methods: The overall design of this study is mainly a cross-sectional survey and correlational. The convenience sampling method was used in this study and 2975 elementary students in different schools and cities of Turkey constituted the sample of this study. The Test of Science Related Attitude, Learning Approach Questionnaire, Achievement Motivation Questionnaire, School Background Questionnaire were used as data collection tools. Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) was selected as a modeling technique for data analyses.

Findings: This study provides a general overview about students’ attitudes towards science. The quality of school’s educational resources, learning and motivational factors, factors related to student feelings and outside activities, and some student characteristics significantly contributed to the students’ attitudes towards science.

Implications for Research and Practice: Enriching science lessons with materials, increasing students’ curiosity, making them learn by discovering and making them do experiments have potentials to contribute students’ attitudes, and experimental research can be used to explore these effects. In order to examine the reasons why students like science or not in detail, qualitative studies should also be conducted.

Keywords: Attitude, Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM), Educational resources, cross-sectional survey.