Ying-Chih Chen

Assistant Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
5411
Associate Professor
Faculty
TEMPE Campus
Mailcode
5411

Biography

Ying-Chih Chen's research agenda focuses on how talk (e.g., self-explanation, group discussion, whole-class discussion) and writing (e.g., texts, diagrams, drawings, tables) can be synergistically adapted as epistemic tools to foster negotiation and group consensus skills among students. He analyzes student talk and writing, examining how they comprehend, critique, and co-construct core concepts that lead to increasing their reasoning abilities. He also designs and leads professional development workshops for K-12 teachers in argumentation focusing on an argument-based approach called the Science Talk-Writing Heuristics (STWH) approach.

Professor Chen is currently researching teachers' knowledge and practices toward argumentation from three aspects: social negotiation (i.e., being able to comprehend, critique, and construct concepts to build consensus); epistemic engagement (i.e., knowing about what counts as good claims and evidence); and ubiquitous representation (i.e., grasping different modalities to represent mental concepts). He is developing and piloting an instrument to measure the degree to which classrooms have become aligned with reform principles defined by current standards (e.g., Next Generation Science Standards) and Professor Michelene Chi's ICAP Framework (Interactive, Constructive, Active, Passive) to quantify teacher quality in science classrooms. Professor Chen evaluates the instrument for validity, reliability, and effectiveness of the instrument which can be used to capture the quality of specific practices of teachers while serving as a reflection tool to identify teaching strengths and weaknesses. He has received two prestigious awards signifying his substantial effect on the field of science education, including the 2014 National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) Outstanding Paper Award, the 2015 Association of American Publishers (AAP) Revere award, and the 2017 NARST Early Career Research Award. 

Education

  • Ph.D. Science Education, minor in Educational Measurement and Statistics, University of Iowa 2011
  • Teacher Certificate Program in Secondary Education (K7-12/ General Science, Physics, Engineering), National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan 2001 
  • M.S. Mechanical Engineering, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan 2001. Thesis: Strength Analysis of A Frangible Laminated Composite Canister Cover. 
  • B.S. Mechanical Engineering, National Sun Yat-Sen University, Taiwan 1999. Thesis: Geometric Design and Manufacture of Bevel Gear.

Google Scholar

Research Interests

Guiding Research Questions:

  • How do students synergistically use talk and writing as an epistemic tool to learn science when they engage in argumentative practice?
  • How do students build consensus while decision-making in group work discussions?
  • How do teachers manage student uncertainty as a pedagogical resource to engage students in reasoning practice and to develop scientific knowledge?

Current Research Projects:

Dr. Chen is currently researching teachers knowledge and practices toward argumentation from three aspects: social negotiation (i.e., being able to comprehend, critique, and construct concepts to build consensus), epistemic engagement (i.e., knowing about what counts as good claims and evidence), and ubiquitous representation (i.e., grasping different modalities to represent mental concepts). To quantify teacher quality in science classrooms, Chen is developing and piloting an instrument to measure the degree to which classrooms have become aligned with reform principles defined by current standards (e.g., Next Generation Science Standards) and Dr. Michelene Chis ICAP Framework (Interactive, Constructive, Active, Passive). He is now evaluating the instrument for validity, reliability and effectiveness of the instrument which can be used to capture the quality of specific practices of teachers, while also serving as a reflection tool to identify teaching strengths and weaknesses.

Dr. Chen has used longitudinal and mixed-methods approaches to investigate (1) how the synergic use of talk and writing can best support students knowledge development, social negotiation, and epistemic engagement in argument-based disciplinary discourse; (2) how the argumentative environment influences the development of students reasoning abilities; and (3) how students'  epistemic uncertainty can be adapted as resources for knowledge development. 

Publications

Peer-reviewed Journal Articles

[* Denotes undergraduate or graduate student collaborators during the time the manuscript was written]

[**Denotes in-service teacher collaborators during the time the manuscript was written]

  1. Chen, Y.-C., & Qiao, X.* (2020). Using students’ epistemic uncertainty as a pedagogical resource to develop knowledge in argumentation. International Journal of Science Education. 1-36. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09500693.2020.1813349​​ ​
  2. Hand, B., Chen, Y.-C., & Suh, J. (2020). Does a knowledge-generation approach to learning benefit students?: A systematic review of research on the science writing heuristic approach. Educational Psychology Review, 1-43. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10648-020-09550-0 
  3. Aguirre-Mendez, C., Chen, Y.-C., Terada, T.*, & Techawitthayachinda, R.* (2020). Predicting components of argumentative writing and achievement gains in a general chemistry course for nonmajor college students. Journal of Chemical Education, 97(8), 2045-2056. 
  4. Chen, Y.-C. (2020). Dialogic pathways to manage uncertainty for productive engagement in scientific argumentation: A longitudinal case study grounded in an ethnographic perspective. Science & Education, 29(2), 331–375.
  5. Chen, Y.-C., Benus, M. J., & Hernandez, J. (2019). Managing uncertainty in scientific argumentation. Science Education, 103(5), 1235-1276. (This paper was recognized as one of the top 10% most downloaded papers, published in Science Education, between January 2019 and December 2019) 
  6. Chen, Y.-C. (2019). Using the science talk–writing heuristic to build a new era of scientific literacy. The Reading Teacher, 73(1), 51-64.
  7. Rillero, P., & Chen, Y.-C. (2019). The use of a digital problem-based learning module in science methods courses. Journal of Problem Based Learning in Higher Education, 7(1), 107-119.
  8. Nunez-Eddy, E.*, Wang, X.*, & Chen, Y.-C. (2018). Engaging in Argumentation: Strategies for early elementary and English language learners. Science & Children, 56(2), 51-59.
  9. Chen, Y.-C., Mineweaser, L.*, Accetta, D.*, & Nooan, D*. (2018). Connecting argumentation to 5 E inquiry for preservice teachers. Journal of College Science Teaching, 47(5), 22-28.
  10. Nam, Y., & Chen, Y.-C. (2017). Promoting argumentative practice in socio-scientific issues (SSI) through a science inquiry activity. EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science & Technology Education. 13(7), 3431-3461.
  11. Chen, Y.-C., Hand, B, & Norton-Meier, L. (2017). Teacher roles of questioning in early elementary science classrooms: A framework promoting student cognitive complexities in argumentation. Research in Science Education, 47(2), 373-405.
  12. Chen, Y.-C., Park, S., & Hand, B. (2016). Examining the use of talk and writing for students’ development of scientific knowledge through constructing and critiquing arguments. Cognition & Instruction, 34(2), 100-147.
  13. Chen, Y.-C., Hand, B., & Park, S. (2016). Examining elementary students’ development of oral and written argumentation practices through argument-based inquiry. Science & Education, 25(3), 277-320.
  14. Chen, Y.-C., Benus, M. J., & Yarker, M. (2016). Using models to support argumentation in the science classroom. The American Biology Teacher, 78(7), 549-559.
  15. Hand, B, Cavagnetto, A., Chen, Y.-C., & Park, S. (2016). Moving past curricula and strategies: Language and the development of adaptive pedagogy for immersive learning environments. Research in Science Education, 46(2), 223-241.
  16. Chen, Y.-C., Moore, T., & Wang, H.-H. (2014). Construct, critique, and connect: Engineering as a vehicle to learn science. Science Scope, 38(3), 58-69.
  17. Wang, H.-H., Billington, B., & Chen, Y.-C. (2014). STEM in a hair accessory. Science & Children, 52(2), 3-8. (This paper was awarded the Association of American Publishers (AAP) Revere award)
  18. Chen, Y.-C., & Lin, J.-L., & Chen, Y.-T. (2014). Teaching scientific core ideas through immersing students in argument: Using density as an example. Science Activities, 51(3), 78-88.
  19. Chen, Y.-C., & Steenhoek, J.** (2014). Arguing like a scientist: Engaging students in core scientific practices. The American Biology Teacher, 76(4), 231-237.
  20. Chen, Y.-C., Hand, B., & McDowell, L.** (2013). The effects of writing-to-learn activities on elementary students' conceptual understanding: Learning about force and motion through writing to older peers. Science Education, 97(5), 745-771.
  21. Chen, Y.-C. (2013). Writing an argument to a real audience: Alternative ways to motivate students in writing about science. Teaching Science: The Journal of the Australian Science Teachers Association, 59(4), 8-12
  22. Chen, Y.-C., & Steenhoek, J.** (2013). A negotiation cycle to promote argumentation in science classrooms. Science Scope, 36(9), 41-50.
  23. Chen, Y.-C., Park, S., & Hand, B. (2013). Constructing and critiquing arguments: Four communication strategies help students discuss, defend, and debunk ideas. Science & Children, 50(5), 40-45.
  24. Park, S., & Chen, Y.-C. (2012). Mapping out the integration of the components of pedagogical content knowledge (PCK): Examples from high school biology classrooms. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 49(7), 922-941.
  25. Park, S., Jang, J., Chen, Y.-C., & Jung, J. (2011). Is pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) necessary for reformed science teaching?: Evidence from an empirical study. Research in Science Education, 41(2), 245-260.
  26. Chen, Y.-C., Tseng, C.-M., & Chang, W.-H. (2010). The role of the teacher in engaging elementary school students in argumentation utilizing science writing heuristic: Four-year case studies. Chinese Journal of Science Education, 18(5), 417-442.
  27. Chen, Y.-C., & Tsai, C.-C. (2009). An educational research course facilitated by online peer assessment. Innovations in Education & Teaching International, 46(1), 105-117.
  28. Chen, Y.-T., & Chen, Y.-C. (2008). The analysis of epistemologies about different background patriarchs in the context of parent-child book-reading interactions. Chinese Journal of Science Education, 16(3), 325-350.

Book Chapter

  1. Chen, Y.-C. (2019, invited). Writing as an epistemological tool: Perspectives from personal, disciplinary, and sociocultural landscapes. In V. Prain & B. Hand (Eds.), Theorizing the Future of Science Education Research, vol 49, 115-132. Switzerland AG: Springer, Cham.

Book Review

  1. Chen, Y.-C. (2015, invited). Einstein fellows: Best practices in STEM education, by Tim Spuck & Leigh Jenkins (Editors). Peter Lang Publishing, New York, NY, USA, 2014, 410 pp. ISBN: 1433121948. Book Review, Teachers College Record. http://www.tcrecord.org/content.asp?contentid=18125 ID Number: 18125

Research Activity

Courses

Fall 2020
Course Number Course Title
DCI 784 Internship
DCI 791 Seminar
TEL 792 Research
EPA 799 Dissertation
Summer 2020
Course Number Course Title
SCN 400 Sustainabl for Sci Teacher
SCN 401 SustainabilitySci,Tech&Society
TEL 780 Practicum
DCI 784 Internship
TEL 791 Seminar
Spring 2020
Course Number Course Title
SCN 400 Sustainabl for Sci Teacher
TEL 780 Practicum
TEL 791 Seminar
TEL 799 Dissertation
Fall 2019
Course Number Course Title
SED 482 Science Teaching Methods
TEL 780 Practicum
DCI 784 Internship
TEL 791 Seminar
TEL 799 Dissertation
Summer 2019
Course Number Course Title
TEL 780 Practicum
DCI 784 Internship
TEL 791 Seminar
Spring 2019
Course Number Course Title
EED 411 Science in Elementary Schools
TEL 780 Practicum
TEL 791 Seminar
TEL 792 Research
Fall 2018
Course Number Course Title
SED 482 Science Teaching Methods
TEL 792 Research
Spring 2018
Course Number Course Title
DCI 691 Seminar
Fall 2017
Course Number Course Title
SED 482 Science Teaching Methods
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Title
SCN 400 Sustainabl for Sci Teacher
EED 411 Science in Elementary Schools
Fall 2016
Course Number Course Title
SED 111 Exploration Science Teaching
SED 482 Science Teaching Methods
Spring 2016
Course Number Course Title
EED 411 Science in Elementary Schools

Honors/Awards

2017 National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) Early Career Research Award

2015 Association of American Publishers (AAP) Revere Award

2014 National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) Outstanding Paper Award