Admission to the course is cost-free for the learner. In addition, materials associated with the lessons have been provided at no cost to the learner. The course is self-paced and each lesson is put together to be completed in approximately 2 hours. The lessons are presented in the form of reading materials, images and short videos.
Learners are not required to sit an exam, but questions are included at the end of each lesson. The questions are meant to help the learner have a better understanding of the material that was discussed and to stimulate further discussion of the issues.
Lesson 1: Science and Technology in Society -This first lesson examines the significance of science and technology in our day-to-day lives. The learner is presented with ways that the understanding and the technology enabled by science reflect in different aspects of society, as a way to provide some real-world examples for students. How science and technology learning constitute an effective way for students to develop 21st century skills are also explored.
Lesson 2: Addressing Resilient Preconceptions -Lesson 2 focuses on ways the learner can identify, confront, and resolve students' preconceived notions. It draws attention to the need to engage preconceptions in order for proper learning to occur.
Lesson 3: Organising Knowledge around Core Concepts -In this lesson, conceptual learning as the most effective way to build comprehension across a subject is highlighted. The lesson also emphasises a need to change the learning experience from memorisation to contextualisation, to give students the ability to sort and expand their learning to make further connections.
Lesson 4: Supporting Metacognition -Lesson 4 examines what metacognition is and how it impacts student success as well as the benefits of student autonomy. The discussion is an opportunity for the learner to increase knowledge about how metacognition can be promoted in students.
Lesson 5: Cooperative Learning -Lesson 5 is a discussion on the different elements that need to be present for students to be engaged in effective cooperative learning. The lesson emphasises the need to foster positive interdependence of students.
Lesson 6: Supporting Individual Student Needs in a Science and Technology Classroom -The discussion in lesson 6 focuses on the inclusion of varied learning styles. There is an emphasis on assistive technologies to help students with disabilities have meaningful learning opportunities. The focus is also on assessment and evaluation strategies to support learning in science and technology.
Lesson 7: Teaching Science and Technology with Limited Facilities/Resources -Lesson 7 explores ways the teaching and learning of science and technology can happen with limited resources. The lesson draws attention to the availability of free resources that the learner can take advantage of to support students in the learning process.
Lesson 8: Active and Experiential Learning -In this final lesson of the Science and Technology course, the rationale and tools to incorporate both design thinking and project-based learning into teaching practice are presented. The discussion is an opportunity for the learner to add to their knowledge in creating opportunities for students to collaborate and problem solve for more meaningful learning in science and technology.
As part of our research on professional learning for educators, we collect data about the user experience in these courses. Research ethics clearance for the project “Face-to-Face and On-line Professional Development for Educators: Impact on Practice” (file #5003) has been provided by the Research Ethics Board of Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Canada. By registering for a course, you provide consent to the use of your data for this research project. No aspect of your participation will cause any harm or discomfort. All data will be securely stored and only used with identifying information removed and in aggregate form. You do not need to complete any questionnaire or questions within them to complete courses. Your participation will benefit research on how to most effectively support professional learning for educators globally. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the primary investigator, Dr. Steve Sider (firstname.lastname@example.org).