This paper provides a discussion of the methodological approach to a research project that builds on previous studies of effective argumentation pedagogy undertaken by one of the authors. In this study, teachers from six schools in a city location are taking part in a one-year project to use new web-based professional development materials to advance their practice in using group discussion and argumentation in science. The teachers attend workshops on planning and organising effective group-work, introducing argument and sustaining small group discussion, and curriculum planning to promote argumentation activity. Between sessions the teachers develop each aspect of pedagogy in their schools. Data are collected from each of the participating schools using teacher survey and interviews to ascertain perspectives on argumentation practice in science, pedagogical strategies used, changes in practice and collaborative working with colleagues in school. The paper focuses on the issues of research design in determining the impact of the workshops.
argumentation; teacher development; group-work