This study examined the effects of a problem-solving-based instructional model on Earth science students’ achievement and alternative frameworks. The investigations employed a pre-test/post-test control group design to detect any significant change. The 172 participants enrolled in four Earth science classes received six weeks of the problem-solving-based instruction. Selected items from Taiwan Entrance Examinations for Senior High School were used to measure students’ achievement in Earth science content. An open-ended question instrument was developed by the researchers to examine students’ conceptual change. Results of an analysis of covariance on achievement post-test scores revealed that the problem-solving-based instructional model did significantly improve the achievement of students (p < 0.05), especially at the application level p < 0.05. A chi-square analysis on students’ alternative frameworks measure indicated that students who were taught using the problem-solving-based instructional model did experience significant conceptual changes than did students who experienced the traditional-lecture type teaching method (p < 0.001).
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