The EU-funded SED project, ´Science Education for Diversity´ has been working to understand how countries in both Europe (UK and the Netherlands) and partner countries (India, Turkey, Lebanon and Malaysia) are addressing gender and cultural diversity when trying to engage young people in science education.
Led by the University of Exeter, SED implemented an extensive research programme across all of the partner countries, distributing questionnaires, organising focus groups and carrying out interviews with teachers and pupils.
Points of particular interest were the impact of culture and religious belief, as well as understanding the process whereby attitudes towards science are formed between the ages of 10 and 14.
Among the outcomes of the project are two new books from the SED team. Science Education for Diversity is an edited collection by Dr Nasser Mansour and Professor Rupert Wegerif from Exeter University including several articles from SED project members. In addition Professor Rupert Wegerif´s book, ´Dialogic: Education for the Internet Age´ refers to the findings of the SED project and argues that despite rapid advances in communication technologies, most teaching still relies on a traditional approach, built upon the logic of print, and dependent on the notion that there is a single true representation of reality.
SED Project partners say further publications based on their work will be forthcoming for a number of years and the very large dataset established will continue to be a resource for many years to come for researchers who want to improve science education across Europe and around the globe.