Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10497/22232
Title: 
Authors: 
Issue Date: 
2020
Citation: 
Tan, M. (2020). Context matters in science education. Cultural Studies of Science Education, 15, 853-859. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11422-020-09971-x
Abstract: 
This forum paper responds to the article summarising the similarities between science, technology, societies, and the environment; socio-scientific inquiry; and socially acute questions. Collectively called science in context (SinC), the authors propose that philosophers, borrowing Marx, should also change the world, and not merely interpret it. In this forum paper, I take the opportunity to make problematic this intention to change the world. We in the English speaking world live in contexts that are intensely being overwhelmed by technocratic, reductionistic, accountability schemes that limit the imagination of what schools can do. It needs remembering that these conditions have come about with more than a little help from the natural sciences (and technology) that we seek to teach our students. Yet, the solution is not one of abandoning science and technology; students need science, but they need a vision of science that can lead them to think differently about what is possible. While it is important that they understand the problems that they will inherit, preparation for the future by merely understanding the past is like trying to shoot a moving target by aiming at where it once was. We need to educate for a certain openness of ambition, which may require that we as educators to come into the educational interaction with no desire for mechanistic processes guaranteeing outcomes. Yes, the world needs change, but only that which is desired by those who will inherit our problems. We educators occupy a unique position, and we should not abuse it, no matter how well intentioned these attempts at change may be.
Description: 
This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in Cultural Studies of Science Education. The published version is available online at https://doi.org/10.1007/s11422-020-09971-x
URI: 
ISSN: 
1871-1502 (print)
1871-1510 (online)
DOI: 
File Permission: 
Open
File Availability: 
With file
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