Suchman Inquiry

This model uses the steps employed in scientific inquiry to approach problems in general.  Inquiry learning requires students to take an active role with the material through challenging and questioning solutions.  This model enhances higher-order thinking skills and problem-solving abilities.

1.       Select a problem and conduct research.  It should be interesting and meaningful to your students’ lives.

2.       Introduce the process and present the problem.  Explain that students may only ask you questions that can be asked in a yes or no fashion.

3.       Gather data.  Respond to questions posed by the students for the purpose of gathering and verifying data.  Guide the students to ask questions more clearly, but avoid restating the questions for them.  Encourage students to call a caucus when they need to talk to one another, but do not permit students to talk to teach other during the questioning periods.

4.       Develop a theory and verify.  When a student poses a theory, stop the questioning and write the theory for all to see.  The class then decides to accept the theory or reject it.

5.       Explain the theory and state the rules associated with it.  Once a theory has been verified by the students, lead them into an explanation and application of the theory.

6.       Analyze the process.  Discuss the inquiry process with students, and have them evaluate how they arrived at the theory and how they could improve the process.