Session Type

Presentation

Start Date

8-7-2011 10:30 AM

Keywords

critical thinking, biology, science and technology studies

Primary Threads

Teaching and Learning Science

Abstract

Science educators are tasked with the dual challenges of facilitating the learning of a massive amount of factual information as well as the development of critical thinking skills to organize, retrieve and apply that information. Often the demands of traditional curricula result in an emphasis on acquisition of information as a terminal learning outcome. Bethune College at York University offers first year students the opportunity to learn in a small group cohort under the direction of a science researcher. Twenty-five selected students were enrolled in BC. 1800: Sex, Lives and Mistaken Ideas. This seminar course was designed to facilitate critical thinking using an STS (Science and Technology Studies) approach that integrated the history, philosophy and social studies of biology. The interdisciplinary nature of the course required students to examine ideas and their effects on the development of biological concepts. Curriculum and evaluation elements will be described with practical examples. Student outcomes and course evaluations will be presented. Participants will be encouraged to consider and comment on how this approach might be used in their teaching.


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Jul 8th, 10:30 AM

A Science and Technology Studies approach to Critical Thinking in Biology

Science educators are tasked with the dual challenges of facilitating the learning of a massive amount of factual information as well as the development of critical thinking skills to organize, retrieve and apply that information. Often the demands of traditional curricula result in an emphasis on acquisition of information as a terminal learning outcome. Bethune College at York University offers first year students the opportunity to learn in a small group cohort under the direction of a science researcher. Twenty-five selected students were enrolled in BC. 1800: Sex, Lives and Mistaken Ideas. This seminar course was designed to facilitate critical thinking using an STS (Science and Technology Studies) approach that integrated the history, philosophy and social studies of biology. The interdisciplinary nature of the course required students to examine ideas and their effects on the development of biological concepts. Curriculum and evaluation elements will be described with practical examples. Student outcomes and course evaluations will be presented. Participants will be encouraged to consider and comment on how this approach might be used in their teaching.