Book chapter

«Odyssey» Scientific Debate: Rhetoric and STEM Education

Foteini Egglezou
IRESE, Hellenic Institute of Rhetorical and Communication Studies, Greece


Τhe Erasmus+ KA2 Odyssey project aims at introducing debates on STEM topics in European schools for cultivating the scientific, argumentative and critical literacy as well as the communication skills of students in secondary education (13-19 years old). In Greece, the testing phase (October 2019-June 2020) involved 18 STEM educators and 126 students from 11 schools. The debate format, which combined elements of Oxford and Public Forum, aimed at making students realize that scientific ideas and practices are not absolute, objective and immutable and therefore require discussions based on convincing arguments supported by relevant and sufficient evidence. The first findings of the project were encouraging, revealing that the rhetorical turn in the teaching of science through debates is purposeful for promoting advances in the modern STEM classroom despite the barriers that hinder analogous efforts.
Read more

Keywords: «Odyssey» project, argumentation, debates, rhetoric, critical thinking, scientific literacy, High School



Pages: 99-118

Published by: Firenze University Press

Publication year: 2021

DOI: 10.36253/978-88-5518-329-1.10

Download PDF

© 2021 Author(s)
Content licence CC BY 4.0
Metadata licence CC0 1.0


Publication year: 2021

DOI: 10.36253/978-88-5518-329-1.10

Download XML

© 2021 Author(s)
Content licence CC BY 4.0
Metadata licence CC0 1.0


  1. Abell, J. 2018. “Value, fact and policy resolutions.” Ace Peak. Connect to a speech and debate expert everywhere, retrieved the 24th of March 2020 <> (2021/05/14)
  2. Aristotle, 1995. Rhetoric (Vol. I). Athens: Kaktos.
  3. Asimov, I. 1959. Words of science and the history behind them. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
  4. Baso, F. A. 2016. “The implementation of debate technique to improve students’ ability in speaking.” Exposure Journal 5 (2): 154-73.
  5. Berland, L. K., C. V. Schwarz, C. Krist, L. Kenyon, A. S. Lo, and B. J. Reiser. 2016. “Epistemologies in practice: Making scientific practices meaningful for students.” Journal of Research in Science Teaching 53 (7): 1082-1112.
  6. Cavagnetto, A. R. 2010. “Argument to foster scientific literacy: A review of argument interventions in K-12 science contexts.” Review of Educational Research 3: 336-71.
  7. Dearden, R. F. 1981. “Controversial issues in the curriculum.” Journal of Curriculum Studies 13: 37-44.
  8. Dewey, J. 1910. “Science as subject-matter and as method.” Science: 121-27.
  9. De Winter, J. F. C., and D. Dodou. 2010, “Five-Point Likert items: t-test versus Mann-Whitney-Wilcoxon.” Practical Assessment, Research and Education 15(11): 1-16.
  10. Duschl, R. A., H. Schweingruber and A. W. Shouse, Eds. 2007. Taking science to school: Learning and teaching science in grades K-8. Washington, DC: National Academic Press.
  11. Egglezou, F. 2019. Methodological guide for teachers: «Odyssey. Oxford Debates for youths in science education». Intellectual Output 04 of the Erasmus + KA2 project Odyssey (Agreement No: 2018-1-PL01-KA201-050823).
  12. Erduran, S., and M. P. Jimenez-Aleixandre M. P., Eds. 2008. Argumentation in science education. New York: Springer.
  13. Erickson, J. M., J. J. Murphy, and R. B. Zeuschner. 2003. The debater’s guide. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press.
  14. Fedrizzi, M., and R. Ellis. 2011. Debate. South-Western: Cengage Learning.
  15. Ford, M. 2008a. “Disciplinary authority and accountability in scientific practice and learning.” Science Education 92: 404-23.
  16. Ford, M. 2008b. “‘Grasp of practice’ as a reasoning resource for inquiry and nature of science under- standing.” Science and Education 17: 147-77.
  17. Freeley, A. J., and D. L. Steinberg. 2009. Argumentation and debate: Critical thinking for reasoned decision making. Boston: Wadsworth Publishing.
  18. Gillham, B. 2000. Case study: Research methods. London/New York: Continuum.
  19. Göb, R., C. McCollin, and M. F. Ramalhoto. 2007. “Ordinal methodology in the analysis of Likert Scale.” Quality and Quantity 41: 601-26.
  20. Hadzigeorgiou, Y. 2015. “A critique of science education as sociopolitical action from the perspective of liberal education.” Science & Education 24(3): 259-80.
  21. Hannan J., B. Berkman, & C. Meadows. 2012. Introduction to public forum and congressional debate. New York: International Debate Education Association.
  22. Joshi, A., S. Kale, S. Chandel, & D. K. Pal. 2015. “Likert Scale: Explored and explained.” British Journal of Applied Science and Technology 7(4): 396-403.
  23. Kennedy, T. J., & M. R. L. Odell. 2014. “Engaging students in STEM education.” Science Education International 25(3): 246-58.
  24. Kuhn, D. 2010. “Teaching and learning science as argument.” Science Education: 810-24.
  25. Levinson, R. 2011. “Teaching controversial issues in science.” In How science works: Exploring effective pedagogy and practice, Ed. R. Taplis, 56-70. New York: Routledge, New York.
  26. Medelsohn, E. 1977. “The social production of the scientific knowledge.” Sociology of the Sciences 1: 3-26.
  27. Millar, R. 2004. The role of practical work in the teaching and learning of science. Paper prepared for the Committee: High School Science Laboratories: Role and Vision, Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences.
  28. National Forensic League. 2009. “Guide to public forum debate.”, <https://debate.uvm. edu/dcpdf/PFNFL.pdf> (2020-03-23).
  29. National Frameworks for Implementation of Oxford Debates in STEM in School Practice. 2019 Intellectual Output O3 of the Erasmus + KA2 project Odyssey (Agreement No: 2018-1-PL01-KA201-050823).
  30. National Research Council. 1996. National science standards. Washington: National Academy Press.
  31. Norman, G. 2010. “Likert Scales, levels of measurement and the laws of statistics.” Advances in Health Science Education 15: 625-32.
  32. Osborne, J. 2014. “Scientific practices and inquiry in the science classroom.” In Handbook of research on science education, Volume II, N. G. Lederman, and S. K. Abell, 593-613. London: Routledge.
  33. Poincaré, H. 1917. La science et l’hypothèse. Paris: Ernest Flammarion.
  34. Sampson, V., and D. Clark. 2008. “Assessment of the ways students generate arguments in science education: Current perspectives and recommendations for future directions.” Science Education 92(3): 447-72.
  35. Sengul, O. 2019. “Linking scientific literacy, scientific argumentation and democratic citizenship. ” Universal Journal of Educational Research 7(4): 1090-8.
  36. Taber, K. 2017. “The use of Cronbach’s Alpha when developing and reporting research instruments in science education.” Research in Science Education 48: 1273-96.
  37. Weber, M. 1958. “Science as vocation.” Daedalus 87(1): 111-34.
  38. Williams-Brown, Z. 2015. “The use of in-class debates as a teaching strategy in increasing students’ critical thinking and collaborative learning skills in higher education.” Educational Futures 7(1): 39-55.
  39. Wolf, D. P. 1993. “Assessment as an episode of learning.” In Construction versus choice in cognitive measurement: Issues in constructed response, performance learning and portfolio assessment, Eds. R. E. Bennett, and W. C. Ward: 213-40. NJ: Lawrence Erlba

Export citation

Selected format

Usage statistics policy

  • 9Chapter Downloads

Cita come:
Egglezou, F.; 2021; «Odyssey» Scientific Debate: Rhetoric and STEM Education. Firenze, Firenze University Press.


Indici e aggregatori bibliometrici