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Title: Improving Primary Science Education in Fiji by Using a Multifaceted Approach
Contributor(s): Taylor, Neil  (author)orcid ; Taloga, Kelera (author); Ali, Sadaquat (author)
Publication Date: 2008
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Abstract: The value of science education as a development strategy for the economic and technological modernization of developing nations is now widely acknowledged (Brown-Acquaye, 2001). Benavot (1992) has reported that the time spent on primary science correlates positively with economic growth rate for a variety of nations. At societal level, science education has the potential to improve living conditions through addressing local problems with respect to such basic needs as clean water, sound nutrition, and personal health (Lewin, 1993). Consequently, improved science education has been placed high on the agenda of tasks to be tackled in many developing countries (Kahn, 1990). Such counties have invested heavily in school science education since the 1960s, but by the beginning of the 1990s, concerns about instructional quality and student achievement were becoming acute (Lewin, 1993). Gray (1999) argues that the last few decades have seen a steady decline in the quality of science education in most developing countries. This rather depressing view is reiterated by Lewin (1990) who comments that although far more children in developing countries study science than previously, research suggests that the great majority do not master more than a small proportion of the goals set for them. It seems that efforts to teach science in developing countries are often met with rote learning of strange concepts, mere copying, and a general lack of understanding on the part of local students (see, e.g., Hewson, 1988). Indeed the continued 'backwardness' of many developing countries in relation to science and technology is claimed by some authors to be the result of the quality of education, rather than the quantity given in these countries (e.g., Mbajiorgu & Iloputaife, 2001).
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: Science Education in Context: An International Examination of the Influence of Context on Science Curricula Development and Implementation, p. 55-65
Publisher: Sense Publishers
Place of Publication: Rotterdam, The Netherlands
ISBN: 9789087902476
Field of Research (FOR): 130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 930302 Syllabus and Curriculum Development
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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