MSc in Curriculum Development and Instruction

Course Information Package

Course Unit TitleCONTEMPORARY DEVELOPMENTS IN SCIENCE EDUCATION
Course Unit CodeESPLE712
Course Unit DetailsMEd Curriculum Development and Instruction (Specialization Electives) - MA Educational Sciences: Dynamic Learning Environments (Specialization Electives) -
Number of ECTS credits allocated10
Learning Outcomes of the course unitBy the end of the course, the students should be able to:
  1. Become familiar with the contemporary science education research agenda, its methods, and, future directions.
  2. To infuse their science teaching skills, including planning and delivering science lessons, with contemporary science education research findings.
  3. Enhance their skills of designing and implementing science lessons that develop students’ beliefs of the nature of science.
  4. Design and implement science lessons that integrate the principles of socioscientific issues education movement, enabling their students to realise how scientific phenomena of the natural world encompass moral principles, elements of virtue and social settings.
  5. Design and implement science lessons that integrate scientific argumentation activities in order to enhance their students’ conceptual understanding, provide them with valuable insights of the rules, techniques and tradition of scientific discourse, and to enable them to develop and defend their own standpoints, to effectively evaluate and confront others’ opinions and become resistant in any efforts of manipulation by political movements.
  6. Design and implement science lessons that integrate models and modeling (including analogies) to promote conceptual understanding and conceptual change, while being aware of potential shortcomings of models used.
  7. Identify sources of informal science education within the communities that their schools’ belong to (i.e. natural history museums, children museums, parks, scientific facilities etc.) and strategically integrate them into their science teaching methods.
  8. Adopt a critical stance over science education curricula proposed from time to time by relating it with contemporary research trends.
Mode of DeliveryFace-to-face
PrerequisitesNONECo-requisitesNONE
Recommended optional program componentsNONE
Course Contents

·         Science Education as a distinct field. A historical review of science education. Links between beliefs of the nature of science and science education. Contemporary beliefs on the nature of science. Reasons for effective teaching of the nature of science. Explicit and implicit teaching of the nature of science.

·         Informal science education. How natural history museums, children museums, parks, and other scientific facilities can be strategically integrated into science teaching. Using games and serious/games for teaching science. Advantages of and benefits from informal science education.

·         Teaching science using models. Computer software modelling for science education. Assessing the added value of computer models of science concepts and processes.

·         Socioscientific Issues Education movement. Socioscientific issues education v. Science Technology and Society movement. Effective implementation of socioscientific issues education in the science classroom. 

·         Scientific Argumentation and Argumentation in Science Education. Toulmin’s Argument Pattern. Developing and evaluating scientific arguments. Individual v. Collaborative argumentation. Scientific v. Socioscientific argumentation. Designing scientific argumentation activities based on students’ individual characteristics.

·         Principles of Science Curriculum Design. Research based science curriculum. Critical review of the New Science Curriculum of the Cypriot educational system. Comparing international science education standards and science teaching standards with the New Science Curriculum of the Cypriot educational system.

Recommended and/or required reading:
Textbooks
  • Bybee, R.W. (2010). The teaching of science: 21st century perspectives. Arlington, VA: NSTA Press.
  • Jimenez-Aleixandre, M.P., & Erduran, S. (2008). Argumentation in science education: Perspectives from classroom-based research. Amsterdam: Springer.
  • Κόκοτας, Π.B., και Πλακίτση, Κ. (2005). Μουσειοπαιδαγωγική και εκπαίδευση στις Φυσικές Επιστήμες. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Πατάκη.Sadler.
References
  • T.D. (2011). Socioscientific issues in the classroom: Teaching, learning and research. Amsterdam: Springer.
  • Khine, M.S. (Ed.) (2012). Perspectives on scientific argumentation: Theory, practice and research. Amsterdam: Springer.
  • National Research Council (2009). Learning science in informal environments: People, places and pursuits. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.
  • Κόκκοτας, Π.Β. (2010). Διδακτική των φυσικών επιστημών ΙΙ: Σύγχρονες προσεγγίσεις στη διδασκαλία των φυσικών επιστημών. Αθήνα: Εκδόσεις Γρηγόρη.
  • Υπουργείο Παιδείας και Πολιτισμού (2010). Νέο Αναλυτικό Πρόγραμμα: Φυσικές επιστήμες για το δημοτικό σχολείο. Nicosia: Ministry of Education and Culture.
  • Υπουργείο Παιδείας και Πολιτισμού (2010). Νέο Αναλυτικό Πρόγραμμα: Χημεία Γυμνασίου και Α΄Λυκείου. Nicosia: Ministry of Education and Culture.
  • Υπουργείο Παιδείας και Πολιτισμού (2010). Νέο Αναλυτικό Πρόγραμμα: Φυσική Γυμνασίου και Α' Λυκείου. Nicosia: Ministry of Education and Culture.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The theoretical part of the module (content of the taught concepts) is delivered by means of lectures, presentations, videos’ viewing and discussing as well as workshops engaging students in collaborative learning. E-learning activities will also be used (i.e. synchronous and asynchronous discussions, wikis, blogs).

Assessment methods and criteria
Coursework50%
Final Exam50%
Language of instructionGreek
Work placement(s)NO