Analysis of Scientific Language of Household Cleaning Products’ Labelling and Its Educational Implications

  • Angel EZQUERRA
  • Marina MAGAÑA
  • Beatriz MINGO
Keywords: scientific literacy, scientific language, labelling, household cleaning products


The necessity of an adequate scientific literacy among the population in general and students in particular is a fact. Two of the main obstacles in science education that hinder it are the lack of connection between the contents worked in class and the students’ day-to-day, and the misunderstanding of scientific language. In the present study, a categorization and analysis of the scientific content of labelling and packaging of household cleaning products is presented. For that, we collected information from more than 500 items from 10 different countries and analysed it through a methodology based on a content analysis of a written text. According to the criteria used –the comparison of each of these contents with the different contexts and knowledge set by the OECD in the 2015 PISA Science Framework- we classified and analysed the information collected according its type of information, obtaining different categories: information referred to physical units, composition of the product, procedures, security instructions, environmental specifications and advertising information. The results and discussion describe the mentioned categories in which this information is classified, and regarded to the type, function, and form of language used in each one. Finally, some important social implication and consequences concerning to the language used in household cleaning products are highlighted in the conclusions. Complementarily, some general recommendations of how to work these contents in class are sketched out.