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Science beyond a white labcoat

By Dr Karen Joyce, Education Director

More Than Just Chemistry!

Just because chemistry is science, doesn’t mean that science is chemistry!

‘I’m not a science teacher, I just teach geography’

So, firstly, there is no ‘just’ about this. To teach is amazing! You have the ability to shape and inspire young minds. Take credit for what you do!

Secondly, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, science is ‘the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behaviour of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment’. To me, not only does that pretty much cover everything there is about the world, but it certainly describes geography pretty well!

So just because the stereotypical scientist wears a lab coat and plays with test tubes or a microscope, that doesn’t mean that what you do isn’t science. The chemists and microbiologists have done a great job marketing here! But it’s definitely time to highlight the diversity of all the other sciences out there. Addressing this stereotype just might help some kids realise that there’s a whole lot more that science can offer that they may like and want to become a part of!

Through She Maps we expose participants to a range of ‘non lab coat’ science concepts. As my background is geography, our program has a strong geospatial flavour as well. I love opening their eyes to aspects of science they never thought were possible. We’re building the next generation of geospatial scientists in schools every week and I think that’s pretty amazing.

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