Students‘ alternative conceptions of animal classification
xmlui.dri2xhtml.METS-1.0.item-citation: Annales Universitatis Paedagogicae Cracoviensis. 111, Studia ad Didacticam Biologiae Pertinentia 2 (2012), s. -193
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Students’ conceptions of animal classification are the subject of several investigations. In previous research the criteria of classification used by the students were generally neglected. In a constructivistic view of learning and teaching these investigations must be judged as fallacious The study presented here shows that students prefer to classify creatures along the criteria of habitat and locomotion. They maintain using these criteria even after learning the categories of biological taxonomy. The results point to the assumption that students have an implicit theory of natural kinship of animals. The „personal taxonomies” of the students investigated are expected to be important means for or hints of learning biological systematic and therefore should be seriously taken into account in biology teaching, especially with regard to biological taxonomy, biodiversity and evolution. In accord with the results of the research, the outline of a teaching unit on the evolutionary approach to the classification of vertebrates is presented.