The International StarT Award is organized by the LUMA Centre Finland, a collaborative organization that supports science, mathematics and technology education, and rewards the most distinguished STEM projects by young people, and the best educational practices by educators.
In 2017-2018 500 project teams and 100 best educational practices from 20 different countries participated.
The three winning projects by young persons were:
“Baret_Care”, students Halil Ataberk Bakırcı, Ahmet Efe Bakırcı and others, Turkey
“These students developed a smart helmet, that improves the security and quality of life of workers in special conditions, namely, it can be used to measure gas, temperature and humidity in the environment, to alert the worker when the measured values may threaten their health, to determine the geographical location, to send the location to the server of tracking system, to call a predetermined number in an emergency.”
“EcoChange”, Agrupamento de escolas de Alcanena, students Bárbara Correia, Catarina Naia, Guilherme Santos, José Coutinho and Maria Farinha, Portugal
“The objective of this project was to raise awareness about climate change and the importance of saving energy. Its hard to concretely measure the results of such project, but many inventive methods were used and the youths enthusiasm and their own ideas for advancing the project were present throughout the process. A lot of co-operation was done with groups of children. The exercise on thinking about different characters usage of energy deserves special credit; it was a great idea and definitely interesting and engaging for the children. The learning diary and video were both well-composed and compact and they gave a good impression of what the process was like.”
“Jump into the life at the Stone Age: Winter” (Hyppy kivikauden elämään: talvi), Day Care Center Piilometsä, Finland
Where a project diary was used by the students “ ….to approach learning about the nature and environment at the kindergarten level through prehistoric times.”
The three winning projects in educational practices by educators were
Innovation for Creativity Development Association, Suraaya Ayyad, Jordan
“A [nationwide] broad science fair programme for kids and youth.” “…… to create a culture of scientific and technological learning, research, and innovation amongst children and youth in primary and secondary level.
MEF Middle School, Simge Sohtorik, Turkey
“An excellent example of the integration of school mathematics and community and social responsibility. The project is entrepreneurial and easily replicated by schools around the world. The students appeared to find the project a motivational, creative and educational way to learn mathematics.“
Preschool group Puuhiset Satulaiva, Kirsi Rehunen, Finland
An “Excellent example, how storytelling, fairytales can be used in pre-primary education. This is also showing how the boundaries of different subjects can be faded out very natural way.”
The public’s favourite project was
“Waste Busters” with their project “Lemna grinder”, students Zeynep Sude Çetin, Bora Özkan, Zeynep Eyüpoğlu, Berfin Elçin, Kerim Berber, Umay Eskialp, Melike Damla Özdemir, Aslıhan Eşkin, Gizem İdil Tunçbilek and Bilgesu Gökçenur. Turkey.
The Public’s favourite best practice:
“StarT Day in S.O.S. Project Schools” S.O.S. Project Schools, Turkey.
StarT 2018–2019: registration is already open!
The authors Weightman, A., Farnell, D., Morris, D., Strange, H. and Hallam, G. (2017) have been named as winner of the Jesse H Shera Award 2018 for their open access paper A Systematic Review of Information Literacy Programs in Higher Education: Effects of Face-to-Face, Online, and Blended Formats on Student Skills and Views. Evidence Based Library and Information Practice, 12(3)
The Abstract reads:
"Objective – Evidence from systematic reviews a decade ago suggested that face-to-face and online methods to provide information literacy training in universities were equally effective in terms of skills learnt, but there was a lack of robust comparative research. The objectives of this review were (1) to update these findings with the inclusion of more recent primary research; (2) to further enhance the summary of existing evidence by including studies of blended formats (with components of both online and face-to-face teaching) compared to single format education; and (3) to explore student views on the various formats employed.
Methods – Authors searched seven databases along with a range of supplementary search methods to identify comparative research studies, dated January 1995 to October 2016, exploring skill outcomes for students enrolled in higher education programs. There were 33 studies included, of which 19 also contained comparative data on student views. Where feasible, meta-analyses were carried out to provide summary estimates of skills development and a thematic analysis was completed to identify student views across the different formats.
Results – A large majority of studies (27 of 33; 82%) found no statistically significant difference between formats in skills outcomes for students. Of 13 studies that could be included in a meta-analysis, the standardized mean difference (SMD) between skill test results for face-to-face versus online formats was -0.01 (95% confidence interval -0.28 to 0.26). Of ten studies comparing blended to single delivery format, seven (70%) found no statistically significant difference between formats, and the remaining studies had mixed outcomes. From the limited evidence available across all studies, there is a potential dichotomy between outcomes measured via skill test and assignment (course work) which is worthy of further investigation. The thematic analysis of student views found no preference in relation to format on a range of measures in 14 of 19 studies (74%). The remainder identified that students perceived advantages and disadvantages for each format but had no overall preference.
Conclusions – There is compelling evidence that information literacy training is effective and well received across a range of delivery formats. Further research looking at blended versus single format methods, and the time implications for each, as well as comparing assignment to skill test outcomes would be valuable. Future studies should adopt a methodologically robust design (such as the randomized controlled trial) with a large student population and validated outcome measures."
The latest issue of Science, 25 May 2018, includes an interesting article describing disparities across racial and ethnic groups in science literacy in the United States and attempts to explain the underlying drivers, concluding that “the science literacy disadvantage among black and Hispanic adults relative to whites is only partially explained by measures of broader, foundational literacies and socioeconomic status (SES)”. The authors suggest that “educational interventions need to measure, and target, not just the quantity of instruction and formal qualifications but also the quality”. The article closes with the conclusion that, “whatever the remedy, ignoring science literacy disparities among underserved groups does not serve science or society well”.
N. Allum et al ‘Disparities in science literacy’ Science Vol. 360, Issue 6391, pp. 861-862
Supplementary Materials, including Materials/Methods, Supplementary Text, Tables, Figures, and/or References are available from www.sciencemag.org
The 2018 Open Access Week Advisory Committee has announced that the theme for the 2018 International Open Access Week, to be held October 22-28, will be “designing equitable foundations for open knowledge”, reflecting a scholarly system in transition.
The event is celebrated by individuals, institutions and organizations across the world, and its organization is led by a global advisory committee. The official hashtag of Open Access Week is #OAweek. The Week, which is promoted globally through community-driven action to open up access to research will be represented through a wide number of workshops, presentations, seminars, discussions and open sessions.
For more information please visit www.openaccessweek.org
You can follow the conversation on Twitter at #OAWeek.
Also share your plans for OA Week:
Translations of this announcement are available in Chinese, Hindi, Portuguese, and Spanish. If you are interested in contributing a translation of the this year's theme or the full announcement in another language, you can find instructions for doing so here.
Hardie Wren Development Initiatives (HWDI) is soliciting applications for its second Innovation in Science Literacy Award (ISLA).
This year’s Award will reward a proposed and creative pilot project of no more than one-year duration, which addresses a local problem in a disadvantaged community with a measurable and sustainable increase in science literacy.
Applications from all disciplines are invited but preference will be given to those short-term projects which are focused on traditionally non-dominant members of society including women, minorities and the very poor.
The recipient of the Innovation in Science Literacy Award 2018 will receive £1000.
Details and application forms. Closing date: 30th June 2018
Working with vegetable famers, agricultural communities, public and private sector organizations, interested groups and individuals, WorldVeg strives to achieve lasting positive impact on the nutritional status, incomes, and well-being of people - particularly in Africa and Asia - based on quality, long-term complementary partnerships in vegetable science and development.
The Centre’s science for development agenda, including experiences of science literacy, is implemented through three outcome-oriented flagship programmes:
and one cross-cutting flagship programme:
WorldVeg’s work and impact are continuously informed and improved through discovery research, piloting innovations, and scaling best technologies.
View the profile on WorldVeg, including a summary of results and hypertext links to their resources and publications (some available in languages other than English, e.g. Français, 中文, tiếng Việt, Tagalog, Bahasa Indonesia, Swahili, Khmer, Myanmar, ภาษาไทย, हिन्दी भाषा, ਪੰਜਾਬੀ ਭਾਸ਼ਾ, தமிழ் மொழி, తెలుగు, 한국어, Española, العربية, русский, Fulfulde, नेपाली and বাংলা) and HARVEST - the WorldVeg library catalogue and document archive, containing over 53,000 records.
The Società Geologica Italiana (Italian Geological Society) is inviting members of the global scientific community, geology enthusiasts and professional multimedia storytellers to prepare a creative, informal video, to explain research, passions or new ideas regarding the Earth, to the wider public of non-specialists.
There are 3 categories:
The 1st prize video in each category will win € 1000,00, free annual SGI (Società Geologica Italiana) 2019 membership and a contribution to travel and accommodation expenses for the award ceremony. The 2nd prize in each category will win € 500,00 and free annual SGI 2019 membership. There are also 2 Special Awards of € 700 each.
Contributions may utilise, for example, animations, stop-motion, cartoons, time-lapse, interviews, music, poems. They should focus on the wonders, dangers and surprises of an adventurous, geological journey, which could take place indoor, outdoor, in a lab, in the mountains, at sea or in the outer space.
Produce the video by utilizing your preferred recording and editing techniques. Tell your story according to one of the contest’s available categories.
By May 20, 2018 fill the online form with all the requested information and indicate the link, from where to download your video.
For contributions that pass the preliminary evaluation by the Selection Committee, the video will be published on the SGI website and on the contest’s "On the Rocks" YouTube Channel. Contributors will be invited to share their video with friends, through contacts and social networks, to get more likes for their video on the YouTube channel.
June 1, 2018: 18 selected videos will be announced and using a tutorial invited to improve their video. Those videos not selected will be evaluated by the Council of the SGI and considered for a Special Prize of the SGI.
June 24, 2018: final date by which the 18 selected videos need to resubmit their videos.
July 9, 2018: you might be a winner! The Panel of Judges will choose the winners of the contest "On the Rocks" by July 9, 2018.
July 20, 2018: the Honorary Committee and the Italian Geological Society will designate the winners.
September 12, 2018: are you the "On the Rocks" winner? The Award Ceremony will take place during the Congress of the Italian Geological Society in Catania on September 12, 2018.
September 12-14, 2018: are you a participant of “On The Rocks? Your video will be screened throughout the Congress of the Italian Geological Society in Catania on September 12-14, 2018.
Similar to many other countries, Chile faces a scientific and informational literacy gap. Two years ago, the Chilean group EtilMercurio identified the challenge and started to bridge the void by tackling scientific misinformation and misconceptions and reviving social interest about important and current scientific topics.
This multidisciplinary group is working by dissecting current subjects with a rigorous scientific approach, ‘digesting’ the information – often difficult to fully grasp – and translating it into short, simple, pragmatic concepts to facilitate their comprehension to a wider public.
The aim is to share information in an accurate and objective way, with peer-reviewed references and citations, providing food for thought and motivating critical thinking in different stakeholder groups, especially decision-makers and citizens.
But they have also created a special ‘formula’: giving a humoristic slant to their articles and posts, featuring memes and GIFs. This has turned out to be a successful strategy to engage interest and make science a more accessible, pleasant and intriguing subject of discussion.
Their active role in communication and popularisation of science have made EtilMercurio an important voice in both local and national scientific debates, from vaccination policies to the current abortion law, and recently drawing the international attention to a case of ethics of science.
Through their website and social media, the group has created a new and innovative way to share knowledge, empowering individuals to make informed choices and reformulating the scientific dialogue in a participative and democratic way.
The annual Global Media and Information Literacy (MIL) Week will be celebrated this year from 24 to 31 October 2018 in Kaunas, Lithuania under the theme “Media and Information Literate Cities: Voices, Powers and Change Makers”.
Topics for papers and presentations should be within the fields of MIL and their connection to MIL Cities as dynamic environments of media, information and technology as well as innovative ways to advance MIL development among people.
The organisers are particularly interested in the multiple literacies and stakeholders, youth critical civic engagement, creative and sustainable cities, voter education, informed citizenry and online participation, freedom of expression, media pluralism, diversity, dialogue, and tolerance. A full list of sub-themes can be found here and detailed rationale here.
In addition to the Feature Conference, Global MIL Week 2018 also features a Youth Agenda Forum to take place on 26 October at the University of Latvia in Riga.
Follow the Global MIL Week 2018 official website for updates.
Public and private funded projects, non-governmental and governmental organisations, companies, universities and schools active in STEM education are invited to join the call for action for the STEM Discovery Week 2018
The tagline for this year’s campaign is “say yes to STEM”.