Supporting Reform in Science Education in Central and Eastern Europe - Reflections and Perspectives from the Project TEMPUS-SALiS
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Ilia State University, GEORGIA
University of Bremen, GERMANY
Publication date: 2014-12-15
EURASIA J. Math., Sci Tech. Ed 2014;10(1):47-58
After the collapse of the former Soviet Union, many Central and Eastern European countries underwent significant change in their political and educational systems, among them Georgia and Moldova. Reforms in education sought to overcome the highly centralized educational system of the former Soviet Union as well as to conquer the teacher-centred paradigm in schools that was both dominant in these countries during pre- and post-Soviet times. National reforms demanded more student-active and problem-based science education under the heading of hands-on and inquiry-based learning. Unfortunately, in many cases, the curricula, teaching materials, and teacher training facilities were inadequate in implementing these reforms successfully. In the case of science education, this paper reflects upon how European Union (EU) initiatives can help the countries in Central and Eastern Europe in their reform efforts. Reflection is performed in relation to the cross-regional TEMPUS IV project SALiS (Student Active Learning in Science). SALiS envisages countries strengthening their capacities to promote contemporary science education through investments in science teacher education curricula and infrastructure. The current paper discusses the potential of such EU projects for aiding reform in science education in EU-neighbouring countries.
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