MSc Science Education & Communication TU Delft – 15th to 18th of October 2017
On Sunday 15th of October thirteen SEC students left from Schiphol Airport to the Helsinki study trip. After enjoying some cultural sights, such as Suomenlinna, on Sunday, the group headed for the first visit to Heureka Science Centre on Monday morning. On arrival we were welcomed by Mikko Myllykoski, the Experience Director of Heureka. He gave an introduction presentation in which he explained the vision of Heureka and which educational and communicational theories they use for the setup of their exhibitions. It was absolutely inspirational to get a view of science education and communication from a new perspective. After this presentation we got also a view of the backstage work performed by Heureka; we got for instance a small sneak peak of an exhibition on the future of Finland. At last we were able to walk round the science centre on our own to enjoy the exhibitions.
In the afternoon we were invited by Airbus Defence and Space on their science communication. This company specializes in critical communications technology, for instance for emergency organizations. They presented us how they enabled good communication between the different parties in Finland. On Monday evening everyone enjoyed an informal dinner with three members of the Science Basement; a group of PhDs and Postdocs that is interested in science outreach, next to their own research. A lot of brainstorming happened on different topics and members from both sides of the group inspired each other with new ideas.
On Tuesday we were invited by the University of Helsinki for a visit to the Craft Science Teacher Education faculty. The visit was started with a presentation about the Finnish education system in general from Sonja Niiranen and subsequently an introduction from Manne Kallio about ‘Craft Science’, a course in which learning by design is a central point. It is compulsory for all primary level students, but a large number of secondary level students chooses the course as well. Thereafter we got a tour through the faculty to see all the facilitations that every school needs for ‘Craft Science’ and to talk to some Craft Science Teachers in training. The general question of this visit: Is the course ‘Craft Science’ the reason for the good Finnish education system? Manne Kallio dared to say yes.