Monthly Archives: June 2017

Women in STEM

2015 data – enrollments in Irish Universities (Mater Dei and St. Pat’s included as they are now incorporated into DCU.) Note: gender balance in science reflects male dominance in physics and maths and female dominance in biology. Interestingly, there is … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Why we need to get rid of STEM

On the surface, ‘STEM’ is a harmless acronym, a handy and catchy way of promoting disciplines that, let’s face it, are pretty important in this technological age. But, to an engineer like me who has worked in a science faculty … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

The road to STEAM

Mary gets a degree in a traditional discipline. Mary gets her first job and it’s right in the middle of her discipline. After a few years, Mary moves ‘sideways’ and starts to drift away from her discipline. Mary does a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

So I’m a professor now!

Last week we got an email from our HR department informing us that we are adopting the American ‘professor’ system of academic titles. So now I’m an Associate Professor! Personally, I’m glad this change has been made and it’s not … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Education in Finland – what’s the secret?

Over the years, Finland has become a sort of educational Nirvana, at least in non-Asian countries, and its reputation has been built largely on its outstanding performance in PISA. In her recent book, Cleverlands, Lucy Crehan describes her year-long, ‘fact-finding’ … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

How should we teach science at secondary school?

Some numbers: This year there were about 76K applications to Irish universities and institutes of technology. At any given time there are about 11K enrolments in science and maths courses in the universities. About 40% of science and maths grads … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Continuous assessment: the cure for all our ills?

Exam-only modules are increasingly rare in third level education in Ireland. On numerous occasions I have sat at exam board meetings only to hear extern examiners recommend that more continuous assessment (CA) should be incorporated into individual modules, and programmes … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment