ERIC Number: ED357975
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992
Revitalizing Undergraduate Science: Why Some Things Work and Most Don't. An Occasional Paper on Neglected Problems in Science Education.
This book explains why so few efforts at reforming science education are successful, and why it is that the 300 studies on the subject published over the past decade have done little more than add to a growing body of literature. The book describes programs which are successful in terms of faculty accomplishments, students graduated and entering advanced study or professional workplace, and showing evidence of high morale among both faculty and undergraduates. Common elements in many of these programs are abandonment of an almost exclusive emphasis on problem solving and modification of the lecture format to permit teaching of underlying concepts. Other variations in traditional introductory physics and chemistry courses are aimed at persuading those simply fulfilling graduation requirements to major in science; at bringing minority students into the fold; or at combining physics or various sub-fields of chemistry in different ways to promote better understanding. Harvard's "chem-phys," is provided as an example of such a combination, but also as a case study of how innovation can be stymied by a lack of university-wide change. The author uses methods of ethnography in reporting what makes individual programs interesting, what their faculty are doing, and what program participants are thinking. (PR)
Descriptors: Case Studies, Change Strategies, Chemistry, College Science, Educational Change, Educational Development, Educational Research, Excellence in Education, Higher Education, Physical Sciences, Physics, Science Curriculum, Science Education, Science Instruction, Undergraduate Study
Research Corporation, Book Dept., 6840 East Broadway Boulevard, Tucson, AZ 85710-2815 ($3.95; 2-10 copies, $1 each; over 10 copies $1.50 each).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Research Corp., Tucson, AZ.