Boosting adults scientific literacy with experiential learning practices


  • Eduardo Dopico University of Oviedo
  • Alba Ardura University of Oviedo
  • Yaisel J. Borrell University of Oviedo
  • Laura Miralles University of Oviedo
  • Eva García-Vázquez University of Oviedo



Citizen science, hands-on lab practice, lifelong learning, science literacy, volunteering engagement


Working as an interdisciplinary team, from the departments of Education and Biology we organized a short experiential learning seminar followed by a hands-on workshop for the promotion of citizen scientific literacy. Participants were adult lifelong learners enrolled in University programs, and others were adults interested in scientific activities without a motivation towards continuous learning. Through a teaching dynamic based on learning science by doing science, they could make close contact with the research procedures in scientific laboratories and learn about the use of DNA to identify unknown fish species. The data collected about their learning gains in this science literacy experience showed that elder lifelong learners found the basic scientific concepts more difficult to understand than the non-lifelong learners, but were more motivated to engage in science education activities than the latter, which makes them a very interesting potential group to recruit for citizen science initiatives.


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Author Biographies

Eduardo Dopico, University of Oviedo


Alba Ardura, University of Oviedo

Postdoctoral researcher at the Depatment of Funtional Biology in the University of Oviedo

Yaisel J. Borrell, University of Oviedo

Professor of Genetics at the University of Oviedo

Laura Miralles, University of Oviedo

Doctor in Biology

Eva García-Vázquez, University of Oviedo

Professor of Genetics in the University of Oviedo


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How to Cite

Dopico, E., Ardura, A., Borrell, Y. J., Miralles, L., & García-Vázquez, E. (2021). Boosting adults scientific literacy with experiential learning practices. European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults, 12(2), 223–238.