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Chief scientists backs Pyne’s plan

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The Educator | 27 May 2015, 08:10 AM Agree 0
Australia’s chief scientist, professor Ian Chubb, has thrown his support behind the Government’s plan to develop a national STEM school education strategy.
  • Susan Hyde | 27 May 2015, 11:08 AM Agree 0
    The Chief Scientist has backed Hon Chris Pyne's proposal to introduce compulsory STEM into the senior school curriculum on the proviso that science and mathematics is taught in a way that is interesting and relevant to young people. The focus needs to be in the middle years where many students are getting bored by too much talking by teachers, answering boring questions from textbooks, copying notes from, and doing predictable experiments that don't work. At least the Australian Curriculum has introduced a strand called Science as Human Endeavour, giving teachers the idea that they could design interdisciplinary science themes that relate to real world situations, or even let their students choose the themes.
    Choice is a very important aspect of engaging young people. Teachers could work harder to listen to their students, find out their interests and negotiate the Science learning.
    As for making STEM compulsory in the senior school certificates, students will not see the benefit of this unless the universities reintroduce prerequisites. Nevertheless, the key to participation in STEM is mathematics, and that's another story.
  • Matt S | 27 May 2015, 12:35 PM Agree 0
    Important to remember that Science and Mathematics are only half of STEM. Without Engineering and Technology education, we are only halfway to addressing the issue.

    Engaging students in our existing courses is a strategy more important than mandating courses to those not interested in a STEM skill career.
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