Articles on Education

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Chinese students may have a different take on the media, but universities in Australia can learn from them. Flickr/badbrother

Different media: Why universities should learn from international students

There is a vast difference between how China is reported inside and outside the country. And that extends to how media and communication is taught in China and Australia. One of my new PhD students, who…
Speedy and decisive action is needed from the government to ensure our future energy security. Flickr/Cayusa

Eureka! Teaching threshold concepts to students

That “Eureka” moment when a student thunders over an educational hurdle opening up a new realm of learning, is the holy grail for educators. The technical term is a “threshold concept”, and they’re being…
Despite ideas to the contrary, the evidence shows that texting does not make us bad spellers. Flickr/lanier67

Texting dsn’t make U a bad spellr

Children and teenagers today do all the things that children and teenagers have more or less always done – they talk to their friends, have dinner with the family, and watch TV. However, as even the casual…

Students encouraged to draw in science

Students who are allowed to draw to explain science terms are more likely to understand key concepts than those restricted…

Hyper TV makes for hyper kids

Young children who watch fast-paced television shows may find it difficult to pay attention, solve problems and moderate…
Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd promised an education revolution, but where are the results? AAP

Education funding: more dollars than sense

All is not well in the Australian school system. Australian schools are struggling to meet the achievement levels of OECD leader Finland. With the release of the commissioned research reports for the Gonski…
A year four slump can be avoided if children are given the tools to read when very young. Flickr/Éole

As easy as ABC: the way to ensure children learn to read

Human speech has long been present in every culture, and our brains have evolved specialized features to enable its rapid development when we are exposed to the speech of others. Reading however is a relatively…
Australians want to learn more about science - it’s more interesting than sport. travelskerricks/Flickr

Science education the key to a better public debate

Late last year, the media reported the surprising results of an ANU poll. Apparently Australians are “more interested in science than sport”! But the really interesting news was a small clarification in…
A new generation of architects is needed to build our cities. Flickr/MorBCN

Building the future with the next generation of architects

The “future” is something which manifests nowhere more potently than in our cities. Yet a substantial transformation over the past twenty years in the way cities are being made – both in terms of their…
More maths teachers means better outcomes for students. Flickr

Mathematics: Why we need more qualified teachers

There is a crisis in the education system, and it’s affecting the life chances of many young Australians. The number of secondary teaching graduates with adequate qualifications to teach mathematics is…
The environment: get out into it. jcolman/Flickr

One small thing you can do for the environment: be inspired

Welcome to “One small thing …”. We asked our authors what one small thing they, or you, could do for the environment. We’ll bring their answers to you on Friday afternoons. Today’s one small thing comes…
Some parents send their children to a religious school, but others struggle to choose. AAP/Alan Porritt

School choice is not the answer to everything

Australia has an unusually high proportion of children enrolled in non-government schools, when compared to similar nations. This dates back to the struggles between colonial governments and Catholic bishops…
Exams aren’t the only way to turn out graduates ready for the world of work. Flickr/Reality-check

Why we should abolish the university exam

The time has come to abolish university examinations. Just because something has been around a long time there’s no reason to assume it’s outdated. But in the case of exams that assumption would be right…
Pupils at this charter school appreciate President Obama’s support, but it’s not the only option. Flickr/The White House

Don’t play the market when it comes to children’s education

Education policy in the United States is paved with some glaring failures. Despite this, many Australian reformers are looking west for inspiration, as the Gonski review of education funding is carried…
The best and the brightest put themselves put themselves through an intellectual ordeal to end up here. Flickr/Tejvan photos

Exam ‘over’ at All Souls College, Oxford, your time starts now…

The most feared exam in the world has been dropped. For over a century those hoping to study at All Souls College in Oxford opened an envelope with trepidation to discover just one word inside. They then…

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