Redefinir la enseñanza de las ciencias

VANCOUVER- A pesar de la importancia creciente de las ciencias en el mundo moderno, su enseñanza sigue siendo un asunto menor y remoto para la mayor parte de la gente. Ello es tanto miope como peligroso. Después de todo la ciencia y la tecnología no son sólo los motores principales del crecimiento en la economía moderna, sino que también son cada vez más esenciales para muchas políticas públicas importantes, principalmente las que tienen que ver con el cambio climático y los servicios de salud.

Ciertamente no se ha ignorado la necesidad de aumentar y mejorar la educación científica. Sin embargo, poca de esa atención se ha dedicado a la educación de nivel superior, que es la único en la que se dispone de datos que muestran cómo lograr progresos sustanciales sin costos enormes. Además, es poco probable que se logren grandes avances en los niveles primario y secundario si no se establece primero un estándar de enseñanza de las ciencias más alto en el nivel superior.

La opinión convencional es que no hay un problema con el nivel educativo superior. Se están produciendo científicos e ingenieros a ritmos comparables o superiores que en el pasado y, si bien a pocos estudiantes de otras áreas les resultan agradables o útiles los cursos científicos obligatorios, eso se considera propio de la materia.

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