The nature of science is the overarching and unifying strand in the New Zealand science curriculum document. Our nature of science articles on the Science Learning Hub unpacks this strand and highlights places within the Hub that address this key component of scientific literacy.

To answer the question what is the nature of science? We must first answer what is science? One common answer is that science consists of three domains:

  • A body of knowledge.
  • A wide range of methods or processes to develop this knowledge.
  • A way of thinking.

The nature of science constitutes this third domain and is the most abstract and least familiar of the three.

The nature of science as a way of thinking refers to ‘thinking with a particular lens’ – just as the nature of history would be thinking through a historical lens. This particular way of thinking is underpinned by certain values and characteristics (such as in science, creativity, curiosity, attempts to reduce bias and empiricism).

Our nature of science articles points you to many different places within the Hub where you can find the nature of science – throughout the articles, research, videos, animations and teaching and learning activities on the Science Learning Hub. Engage your students in science by wrapping your science programme around the nature of science.

Published 22 October 2015