ASE announces Professor Robin Millar as next president
1 November 2011
ONE of science education’s most influential figures has today been announced as the next President of the ASE.
ASE’s Chief Executive Annette Smith said: “We are delighted Robin has accepted this position at a crucial time for science education with a new National Curriculum to be unveiled during his presidential year.
“Not only is he a distinguished and influential science education researcher, but Robin has also been a part of ASE’s membership for many years.”
Professor Millar will take over the role from Genetics Professor Steve Jones in January 2012.
He said: “The great strength of ASE is that it provides a constructive and collegial forum where teachers, teacher educators, researchers, curriculum developers and those involved in shaping policy can meet to share, refine and challenge ideas about science education – on an equal footing.
“As a member of all of these groups, I will work in my year as president to encourage discussion and dialogue within and between them, and to strengthen the links between practice, policy and research.”
The new president will kick off his year in the post with a Presidential Address at the ASE’s Annual Conference in Liverpool in January. He will talk about the challenge of getting science education right, a subject he has devoted much of his working life to.
In a preview of his address, he said: “Many of the reasons why teaching and learning science is demanding, and often less successful than we would wish, lie in the characteristics of science itself.
“These intrinsic challenges cannot be avoided, but need to be recognised and addressed.”
Profile: Professor Millar
Professor Millar gained a BA in Natural Sciences (Part II in Theoretical Physics) from the University of Cambridge, and a PhD in Medical Physics at the University of Edinburgh before training as a teacher. He taught Physics and Integrated Science for eight years in secondary schools in Edinburgh before moving to York as a Lecturer in Education in 1982.
At York, he teaches on undergraduate and master’s programmes in education and the Science PGCE. He also supervises doctoral studies in science education, and is director of the Science Curriculum Centre.
His main research interests are in teaching and learning science at secondary school level, science curriculum design and development, the role of practical work, and the assessment of science learning.
Professor Millar has directed several large research projects, most recently the ESRC-funded Evidence-Based Practice in Science Education research network. He has published widely in academic and professional journals in science education, and was an author of the influential Beyond 2000 report. He played a leading role in several major curriculum development projects, including Salters’ GCSE Science, AS Science for Public Understanding and Twenty First Century Science.
From 1999-2003, he was the President of the European Science Education Research Association. He was a member of the Science Expert Group (SEG) for the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) study in 2006, and is once more an SEG member, advising on the early stages of preparation for PISA 2015.