• Question: What do you think of the current state of Secondary School science education?

    Asked by Jason T to Rosie, Liz, Kevin, Beccy on 20 Jun 2017.
    • Photo: anon

      anon answered on 20 Jun 2017:

      I didn’t go to school in the UK so I can’t do a now vs then comparison. However my British boys go to school here. I have been impressed at the early emphasis on setting up a ‘fair test’ at such a young age. I don’t remember that being taught to me until much later. What I do wish they had was a ‘science fair’ where each child who wants to conducts their own investigation or experiment and then writes it up on posters. In school, I grew bean plants (all over our conservatory) and watered them with water and acid solutions of different strengths. (Acid rain was a big thing then.) I measured and looked for impacts of the acid. It was great fun. It was also the first time I stayed up all night working! I was probably 13 or 14.

    • Photo: Rosie Fok

      Rosie Fok answered on 20 Jun 2017:

      You are better placed to answer that than me. It is nearly twenty years to the day since I left secondary school, and my own children aren’t old enough yet for me to have any up to date experience.

      I think that opportunities like “I’m a scientist” are great, and the fact that your class is involved suggests that science education (or at least your teacher) in your school is doing something right.

    • Photo: Liz Buckingham-Jeffery

      Liz Buckingham-Jeffery answered on 21 Jun 2017:

      This is a tricky question for me, because I left secondary school in 2008 so I don’t know how it is now! But I certainly didn’t have things like I’m a Scientist when I was in school, so it must be quite good! I think because new technology has developed and become a lot cheaper since I was in school, things are quite different now.

      One thing I have noticed, is that most jobs need skills from a lot of different school subjects and a lot of jobs overlap different sciences. For example, my job is in the overlap of maths and biology (and IT). But when I was at school, subjects and sciences (biology, chemistry, physics) were taught very separately and it wasn’t obvious that there were a lot of overlaps between them.