Misconceptions in biology education: a review of relevant research
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Misconceptions are an obstacle to comprehend scientific phenomena. Since misconceptions are a significant problem at all levels of education, studies have been increasing in the field of biology education. The aim of the study was to explore the patterns of the articles about biology misconceptions in Turkey and to reveal general tendencies. To meet this aim, 67 articles were selected through ISI Web of Knowledge, Scopus, EBSCOhost, ULAKBİM and ASOS Index databases published from 2000 to 2014. Meta-synthesis (thematic content analysis) method was used to explore characteristics, purposes, themes and patterns, data collection tool types, research methods, sample and sample sizes, and data analysis methods of these articles. Selected articles were subjected to the adapted version of the Paper Classification Form developed by Sözbilir, Kutu & Yaşar (2012). The results show that articles about misconception in biology are mostly published in international journals and written in Turkish. These articles mainly focus on identifying misconceptions. Most of the studies’ samples were pre-service teachers. The sample iv size of the studies varied between 31-100. Qualitative and quantitative research methods were equally dominate over mixed method, which was less preferred. The findings also indicate that more studies have been undertaken in environment and ecology, and genetics and cell division. Achievement and diagnostic tests were the most common data collection tools and used multiple choice and open-ended question types. This review is expected to inform educators, teachers, pre-service teachers and curriculum developers about themes and patterns in misconception research.