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Structure and comparison of Australian and Japanese junior high school students' interest in science

[Speaker] Tanaka, Etsuko:1
[Co-author] Manalo, Emmanuel:2, Dryer, Rachel:3
1:Nagoya university (Japan), 2:Kyoto University (Japan), 3:Charles Sturt University (Australia)

Students' interest in science has previously been shown to be comprised of six factors based on experience, amazement, accomplishment, knowledge acquisition, thought deepening, and daily life relationship (Tanaka, 2015). The purpose of the present study was to examine whether the science interest of Australian junior high school students has the same structure, and to compare the levels of interest in Japan and Australia. Five-hundred-and-eighty-six Australian students and 757 Japanese students (grades 8 to 9) were asked to answer the questionnaire about their science interests. Confirmatory factor analysis using covariance structure analysis showed that the science interest of Australian and Japanese junior high school students has the same six-factor structure (CFI=.91; RMSEA=.05), and there were no significant differences in the subscales correlations. A two-dimensional analysis of variance (country×kind of interest) also revealed that, except for accomplishment-based interest, the Australian students possessed higher levels of interest in science.
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