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S Stem

STEM - Education

Chair: Ortwin Renn

Contributions: Ilan Chabay, Tom Børsen and Jan Mehlich, Ortwin Renn



STEM - Education - Organized Section Part 1 & discussion


Presentation by Ilan Chabay: "Innovative STEM education for sustainable futures"


  What must we learn to be able to meet urgent, critical, and complex challenges of sustainability that we face in present and future societies? What kind of innovative STEM education would help us meet these tremendous challenges? I will suggest three innovative changes in the current paradigm of education and discuss why they are crucial in moving to contextually and culturally differentiated sustainable futures. The key ideas are 1) embedding STEM learning in a holistic framework of interdependent social, natural, and constructed systems, 2) placing greater emphasis on nurturing curiosity and learning to ask critical questions, and 3) focusing attention explicitly on the mental, analytical, and computational models with which we interpret our sensory (including augmented) observations.

STEM - Education
 - Organized Section Part 2 & discussion


Presentation by Tom Børsen and Jan Mehlich: "Integrating responsibility issues into the Chemistry Curriculum":


  We propose a course concept that aims at translating the RRI conceptual framework into tertiary chemistry education practice. Built on the theoretical and empirical foundations of philosophy, sociology and anthropology of technology, the intervention presents, elaborates and applies a practical framework of RRI as guidelines for professional conduct in the context of chemistry (academic research and corporate R&D). This because of the enormous impact of chemical progress has on the social and environmental lifeworld. What we deliver is a curricular course design that employs problem- and challenge-based learning (P&CBL) methodologies. The highly practical course—with 'lectures' reduced to a minimum—is thematically structured around fictitious transdisciplinary and socio-technical innovation projects as they may happen in real-world contexts, potentially in cooperation with local chemical companies and other stakeholders. Students form teams, define roles, identify shared values, choose a challenge of their interest, and are guided through developing and validating a solution. RRI tools such as ethical design thinking, value-sensitive design, safety-by-design, ethical technology assessment, ethical vision assessment, narrative story-telling, and normative risk assessment, are brought into the teamwork step-by-step, allowing students to dive deeper into the matters of their interest and needs.