Science literacy in a broad sense contains Science Communication, Science Outreach and Science Advice. Science Communication refers to public communication presenting science-related topics not only between scientists, but also between non-scientists. Science Outreach aims to promote public awareness of science and to make informal contributions to science education such as public lectures, visiting primary and secondary schools, workshops for teachers or students, supporting science fairs, and mentoring students. Science Advice means advising governments on science-related issues. Since Science Literacy is the most important issue that Science Academies face now, we would like to discuss and propose good ways to improve Science Literacy in IAP member countries. KAST (The Korean Academy of Science and Technology) has the successful experience of IAP project on Science Communication in 2012 and we would like to extend the study to the broader concept of Science Literacy in 2014.
The school science curriculum plays a vital role in developing science literacy particularly as science is generally taught to all. Science literacy entails acquisition of knowledge, skills, attitudes and understanding the basic concepts of science and the nature of science as well as developing the capacity to access, read and understand materials with scientific and /or technical dimension and apply these to make informed decision that affect our lives. Science is essentially experimental and relates closely to inquiry and discovery. The inquiry-based approach to science education or IBSE has been an established program under IAP-SEP and is widely acknowledged as an effective approach in teaching the subject. IBSE will compliment the science literacy programmes. Relevance to IAP’s Mission and Strategic Plan: In the 2013 IAP General Assembly at Rio de Janeiro, it was announced that Science Literacy is a common grand challenge. To meet the challenge, Academies need to work jointly on Science Literacy. KAST and AASSA (The Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia) volunteer to work on this matter as a hub in Asia/Pacific region under IAP SEP (Science Education Programme).
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