Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Michael P. Clough


This study examines the impact of historical short stories on upper and lower level high school chemistry students in the second semester of a two-semester course at a large Midwestern suburban school. Research focused on improved understanding of six fundamental nature of science (NOS) concepts made explicit in the stories, recollection of historical examples from the stories that supported student NOS thinking; student attitudes toward historical stories in comparison to traditional textbook readings as well as student attitudes regarding scientists and the development of science ideas. Data collection included surveys over six NOS concepts, attitudes towards science and reading, and semi-structured interviews.

Analysis of the data collected in this study indicated significant increases in understanding for three of the six NOS concepts within the upper-level students and one of the six concepts for lower level students. Students were able to draw upon examples from the stories to defend their NOS views but did so more frequently when responding verbally in comparison to written responses on the surveys. The analysis also showed that students in both levels would rather utilize historical short stories over a traditional textbook and found value in learning about scientists and how scientific ideas are developed.


Copyright Owner

Garrett Taylor Hall



File Format


File Size

171 pages