Jennifer: Science communication in Western Australia didn’t slow down over the festive season. In the lead up to Christmas, Western Australians had the opportunity to enjoy numerous public engagement events.
These included a free lecture by Nobel Laureate Carl Wieman on December 7. Dr Wieman is founder of a collaborative science education initiative at the University of British Columbia, which uses new technologies to provide applicable science education. His intention is to facilitate the development of undergraduate science education practices, to keep pace with the continual development of science.
The five-year, $12M initiative was developed using scientific methodology. It measures exactly how much students are actually learning in class. Based on these results, teachers can adapt their instructional methods and can use the program to incorporate effective use of technology. Wieman provides data proving that his techniques result in an increase in information retention by students, as well as a deepening of their understanding of basic concepts.
The Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative can be accessed online. The website provides comprehensive guidelines for students as well as teachers.