The common analogy of likening the study of science to the challenges of trying to determine the contents of a closed, opaque box is an interesting one. If nothing else, it forces us to recognize the uncertainties of science and the fascinating experiences that one may encounter as one attempts to discover what is actually inside the box.
Science teachers have the challenge of passing on this sense of intrigue and adventure to the students and at the same time meeting what some might consider to be the more mundane professional competence. There is little doubt that there is an urgent need for students to excel in science at all levels of the education system. There is also the demands of syllabus coverage and passing external examinations. The extent to which the science teacher is able to do the latter is often used to judge her/his professional competence.
There is little doubt that there is an urgent need for students to excel in science at all levels of the education system. There is also the disturbing reality that many students are “turned off” from doing science, often because of how it is presented.
The science education component of the diploma in education programme is designed to help teachers to reflect on improving in their classroom practices. There is much evidence to suggest that as we reflect on what we do as science teachers, we will become better at teaching science. In this regard a number of courses spanning the pedagogical and the epistemological issues of science teaching are offered.