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The purpose of this study was to improve the conceptual understanding of students using model-based teaching about the human skeletal system in grade seven. Quasi-experimental research was employed pre- and post-test, control and experimental group design. Out of four sections, two sections (n = 132) were selected using simple random sampling techniques. The data were gathered by tests, observation and informal assessment. The data obtained from tests were analysed quantitatively through mean, standard deviation, independent t-test and the observation and informal assessment data were analysed qualitatively. The pre-test results indicated that there was no significant mean difference and p>0.05 between the two groups. Similarly, the result of pre-informal assessment showed that students in both groups had common misconceptions about the topic. The post-test results revealed that model-based teaching approach exhibited significant changes compared to the traditional groups of students. From the results of this study, it is possible to conclude that the model-based teaching approach improves students’ conceptual understanding, participations and clear misconceptions compared to the students taught by traditional teaching approach. Based on the finding it was recommended that the model-based teaching approach should be encouraged for teaching and learning biology.
Keywords: Conceptual understanding, human anatomy, model-based instruction
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