Welcome to the Department of Natural Sciences. We are a bold innovative team working to create a framework for a scientifically literate Caribbean Citizenry. We are committed to the promotion of a Caribcentric world view which embraces the collective history, culture and philosophical perspectives of people of Caribbean descent and places these in a dynamic privileged valuable position equal to any other world view. We also hold the view that our future development will depend upon the extent to which our science teachers will be able to use research in teaching and learning to make decisions about how to embolden their students with the confidence to create knowledge and innovative products using indigenous materials to our advantage. Our teachers are therefore exposed to a range of content using inquiry based strategies to promote the skills necessary for knowledge creation relevant to science, life and work in the 21st century.
The Mico's location at 1A Marescaux Road, positions it within less than a 10 km radius of at least 12 schools ranging from Primary to High Schools both private and public. This location facilitates easy access to a range of research data that is unparalleled. In addition, being in the major urban centre of Cross Roads access is readily available from the Norman Manley International Airport, uptown and downtown Kingston as well as from the surrounding parishes. It is our intention in the Department as indicated in the University's vision to expand access to our programmes to students in the Caribbean and the World.
Over these 5 years (2008-2013) the Team in the Department of Natural Sciences will:
- Collaborate to develop relevant degree programmes to promote the development of knowledge-based Caribbean societies.
- Develop a culture of excellence in teacher preparation through the promotion of practical scholarship and research in teaching and learning.
- Promote creativity and innovation in teaching and learning through use of the method of inquiry to solve local and global problems as well as through promoting entrepreneurship in science, mathematics and information technology.
- Secure an attitude of ongoing professional development (life-long learning) by facilitating membership of staff and prospective teachers in local and international professional teacher and research organisations.
- Promote critical thinking through the use of topical issues of current concern to teach content (e.g. H1N1, AIDS, climate change, multiculturalism, gender issues, alternative energy, genetically modified organisms, war) in courses.
To be the premier centre for the preparation of Teachers of Science, in the Caribbean with the relevant skills necessary to drive human development in 21st century.
Among the implications of living in a "knowledge based" society is the understanding that all workers of the future will need to be characterized as creative and innovative, being able to work with, evaluate, organize and create knowledge. In other words, the creation of knowledge will not be left to a specialized set of elite individuals, but rather be a common characteristic of persons in all kinds of industries and organizations. They will need to be lifelong learners. Science is no longer to be separate from other human concerns but is now an integral part of people's daily lives. In knowledge based societies, to be alienated from science is to be alienated from modern society.
The B.Sc. (Science Education) fulltime programme requires prospective science teachers to complete a compulsory Mathematics for Science course as well as a core of introductory science courses from each science area. Prospective teachers are expected to do a minimum of a major and a minor science specialization. Our programme also facilitates minors in Information Technology or Mathematics that quality entrants to teach these subjects up to CAPE. The programme also facilities a double major in two of the sciences. There are also a wide range of electives that persons can pursue which include Environmental Education and Entrepreneurship offered by the faculty. These offerings serve as the vehicle through which teachers with the following relevant characteristics can emerge.
Our Prospective teachers will:
- Use the language of Mathematics to create science knowledge
- Respond to the diverse needs of today's learner
- Design face to face learning environments
- Design asynchronous/online learning environments
- Use inquiry to teach science
- Use problem based learning strategies to teach science
- Teach two science subjects up to CAPE and Integrated Science up to CSEC
- Generate actionable theories of teaching and learning
- Develop skills in Entrepreneurship
- Use problem based learning strategies to teach science. Teach two science subjects up to cape and inte-grated science up to CSEC. Generate actionable theories of teaching and learning.