Interdisciplinary (99) This project is adapting Trefil and Hazen's "The Sciences: an Integrated Approach," and the associated Laboratory Manual by Stanionis (New York, John Wiley and Sons, 2000) into a year-long course for non-majors. Most of the adaptive work is being made on the laboratory side of the course. The course is intended to redress serious deficiencies in the science preparation of most non-majors and education majors at Huntingdon College. It will replace a previously offered course in the natural sciences that has proven ineffective.
The new course is shifting emphasis, stressing more laboratory work and opportunities for students to learn how scientists approach research through direct experiences. The new course is incorporating planned changes in pedagogy, including group exercises, that are compatible with laboratory practices and the learning objectives of the course. The course is incorporating computer technology in the classroom, by taking advantage of several of the many computer animations and demonstrations of scientific principles now available. The prime objective of the course is to teach students how science works, and to explain scientific material to a general audience.
The impact of the course will be assessed by a combination of data from student course evaluations, enrollment tracking, standardized tests, and following-up with students who enter K-12 teaching, in order to cover the impact on student teaching and early career experiences in teaching.