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Science Note: Helpdesk

Issue: March 2016 360

Theme editorial: Mathematics in science

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Richard Needham

Extract: Mathematics in science has been given greater prominence in recent curriculum and specification changes. Yet teachers have long been concerned about the difficulties their students experience when transferring what they learn in their mathematics lessons into the science classroom.

The language of mathematics in science

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Richard Boohan

Extract: The Language of Mathematics in Science is an ASE project supported by the Nuffield Foundation that aims to support teachers of 11-16 science in the use of mathematical ideas in the science curriculum.

A concept map for understanding ‘working scientifically’

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Philip Johnson and Ros Roberts

Extract: What is the ‘thinking behind the doing’ of ‘Working scientifically’? A concept map showing the interrelated ideas and how they impact on the difficulty of an investigation is described

Teaching statistics in post-16 biology

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Neil Millar

Extract: Current methods of teaching and using statistics are outdated and unhelpful; changes need to be made if students are to succeed in modern biology

Mathematics and the pH scale

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Dorothy Warren

Extract: This article outlines how students’ understanding of the pH scale is enhanced by an understanding of the underlying mathematical concepts.

Promoting the understanding of mathematics in physics at secondary level

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Alaric Thompson

Extract: Developing an understanding of the processes and language of mathematics leads to improved understanding of the relationships between variables and quantities.

The formula triangle and other problems with procedural teaching in mathematics

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Ed Southall

Extract: Quick and simple rules for performing calculations should only be used after the underlying concepts have been taught.

Mathematical input into secondary science continuing professional development (CPD)

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Steve Lyon

Extract: Experiences of running mathematics professional development courses for science teachers shows a need for shared resources and approaches.

Does intelligent life exist beyond our planet? An exercise in estimation and problem solving

Issue: March 2016 360

Author: Andy Bullough

Extract: Handling very large and very small numbers can offer an entertaining use of computers and calculators.

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