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Secondary students road-test ECU science program

Wednesday, 25 January 2012


Secondary students spent three days at ECU’s Joondalup Campus learning how to make slime, handle snakes and solve real-life engineering problems.

The Science Experience (TSE) attracted Year 9 and 10 high school students from across the Perth metropolitan area and as far afield as Kalgoorlie and Margaret River.

The program utilises the state-of-the art facilities at the Joondalup Campus, enabling participating students to experience science in a practical interactive setting.

ECU students, staff and visiting science educators guided young science enthusiasts as they created fossils, handled reptiles, played with fire and got the chance to be nurses and engineers.

TSE students also attended university lectures on topics such as melanoma research, extra-terrestrial life and engineering and technology.

Project Coordinator Ms Nardia Bordas said TSE was a way for teens with similar interests to make new friends and to see what University was all about.

“TSE is a special opportunity for students to experience first-hand what it's really like to study science at university, by really doing it, at the age when they're starting to choose their upper school subjects,” Ms Bordas said.

Kalgoorlie-Boulder Community High School student Josephine Day was excited to come to Perth for the program, which her two elder sisters attended in previous years.

“Coming from Kalgoorlie, there’s still options, but not as many of them so it’s a really good experience,” Josephine said.

ECU Secondary science education student and TSE group leader Michael Hill believes hands-on programs like TSE were essential in reviving the declining interest in high school sciences.

“We have to try and move away from text books and the chalk and talk and get kids excited about science,” Michael said.

 “Getting the kids engaged and involved by actually seeing, touching and doing science, brings it into their worlds, it illustrates that we use it every day.”

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