Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
University of Toronto
Science & Technology Education
CTL 1223, a half-course in graduate studies at OISE-UT, focuses on theory and practice in science (and/or technology) education to help students to gain expertise, confidence and motivation for self-directing personal and social action projects to address harms they perceive to be associated with fields of science and technology, their relationships with each other and with societies and environments. Through the links at right, you can access a course outline and relevant educational resources. If you have any comments, questions, suggestions, etc., please don't hesitate to write to me about them.
This course is intended to
provide graduate students with theoretical and
practical resources for helping students to
self-direct networked research-informed and
negotiated action (nRiNA) projects aimed at addressing
power-related problems of interest to them in
relationships among fields of science and technology
and societies and environments (pSTSE). As indicated
below, students might conduct Internet research to
learn more about energy systems, roles of politicians
and companies and climate change and, then, design and
conduct studies (e.g., teenagers’ shower lengths) to
supplement their learning and, with various resources
available to them, negotiate, develop and implement
plans of action (e.g., personal behavioural changes,
educational pamphlets, Facebook™ posts and a climate
march) to address problems (e.g., hot water uses) they
perceive. This course is related to my research in the
Because students often struggle to self-direct nRiNA projects, the course also deals with a range of teaching/learning approaches that teachers could use to help students to develop expertise, confidence and motivation for leading such projects. Related to such projects are various theoretical conceptions, such as actor-network theory and conceptions of power.
|Although this course relates to curricula
in many places in the world, it is mostly aligned with
the first two Goals — as illustrated above — of Ontario
curricula (e.g., MoE, 2008, p. 6). Although ‘STSE’ and
‘Skills’ education are listed first and second,
respectively, in Ontario curricula, which gives them
considerable official support, they often are de-emphasized
in schools — which continue traditional emphases on
‘Concepts1’. This course,
therefore, focuses on Goals of official curricula that
often are not part of normal practice in schools.
Moreover, this course emphasizes aspects of STSE
and Skills education that are not commonly addressed in
schools — such as roles of financiers and corporations
in influencing fields of science and technology, which
often are linked to many STSE problems, like climate
change, human diseases and species losses (e.g., Carter,
2005; Mirowski, 2011). Accordingly, there are numerous
scholars suggesting that citizens need to be
ever-vigilant in critically evaluating and addressing
harms associated with activities of fields of science
and technology and individuals and individuals and
groups influencing them.
1Although the Ontario government calls these ‘Concepts,’ I call this ‘Products’ – because: i) there are concepts associated with other domains, such as STSE, and ii) the term ‘Products’ because what is being taught are products (e.g., laws & theories) of scientists’ and engineers’ work.
To accomplish course goals, graduate students will be provided with lectures and readings (mostly refereed publications) and sample instructional resources — and regularly asked to analyze and evaluate them. The course also involves some curriculum development and evaluations by students. A list of relevant refereed publications is provided below (not all of which is required reading). Ongoing course lectures and ‘formative’ assignments (Value = 25% of final grade) are meant to prepare students for development of the course’s two ‘summative’ assignments. These are outlined below, with detailed descriptions given on separate sheets (Note: These are only sample possible assignments):
To help students to achieve the goals of this course, several resources are provided. Although there is no formal course text, a few books will be recommended. In addition, several readings will be provided from various refereed journal articles, book chapters, etc., many of which are given below. Related to that, students should make great use of the OISE/UT Library, including its provision of full-text journal articles. Students also are strongly urged to use ideas, perspectives, practices, etc. provided through my website. Although the resources on my site is largely oriented towards science education, there may be many ideas, resources, etc. that apply to other subjects - including mathematics & technology education. Ideas and resources through the STEPWISE website are core to this course. Other resources are outlined briefly below, as well as linked, at right. This course was conducted online via a PeppeR site.
The following sets of web pages could be very helpful for students in this course:
All of the refereed sources below are not intended to be read by students in the course, but are provided in case anyone chooses to use some of them for particular assignments. Also, the course will provide other references.
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