Sunday, December 4, 2011


What do you understand by technology?

Many definitions ?- means different thing to different people

Epistemologically which knowledge comes first, how it began ? science, mathematics or technology? (discuss)

Science - study of nature and fenomena, how the world/universe works (satisfying people's curiosity)
Mathematics - study of numbers, shapes, patterns and relations (as a language of science)
Technology - study how to solve practical problems and serves human needs

In the broadest sense, technology extends our abilities to change the world around us : to cut, shape, or put together materials; to move things from one place to another, to reach farther with our hands, voices, and senses.

We invent technologies to change the world to suit us better which may relate to survival needs such as food, shelter, defence etc.

Developments in science and mathematics often stimulate innovations in technology by offering new kinds methods to be solved (discuss examples).

In particular, the progress of science and mathematics ( intensity of discoveries of scientific and mathematical ideas) has contributed to advancement of technologies (agriculture, manufacturing, medical,transportation, construction, ICT etc - technological inventions) for thousands of years and still continues to do so.

Any invention is likely to lead to other inventions. Discuss.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Project 2061 identifies scientific literacy (which embraces science, mathematics, and technology)
as a central goal of education and the failure of US education to produce scientifically literate population as a national crisis.

Because mathematics is so basic and used extensively in science and technology, so mathematics should be a central component of scientific literacy. It is a powerful indicator of technological readiness.

A "new" definition of mathematical literacy for US is proposed.

Shift of focus of school maths from its current (before 1989) dualistic approach ie minimal
mathematics for the majority of students, and advanced maths for a minority of students to
a common core of maths for all students throughout their school experience.

One of the main issues to be considered is :

"What should high school graduates know about mathematics (common core) to equip them for life in a technologically advanced society?"

High school maths must adopt broader goals for all students (NCLB principle- all students!!).

It must provide experiences that encourage and enable students to value maths, gain confidence in their own mathematical ability, become powerful mathematical thinkers and effective problem solvers.

Broader goals in term of curriculum standards such as

1. maths as problem solving (eg mathematical modeling, problem posing etc)

2. maths as communication (eg multiple representations- concrete, pictorial, graphical, algebraic, words/written and oral/verbal of mathematical ideas/concepts)

3. maths as reasoning (eg inductive and deductive reasoning, spatial reasoning, logical arguments, make and test conjectures, proving etc )

4. mathematical connections (eg maths as an integrated whole, connections among topics, with other disciplines - science, technology, business etc).

Sunday, November 13, 2011



- New vision for schooling in the 21 st century
- achieve global competitiveness

Project 2061's benchmarks are statements of what all students should know and be able to do
(LOs) in science, mathematics, and technology by the end of grade 2, 5,8, and 12 or by the time they graduate from high school.(K-12 education).

It promotes literacy in science, maths, and technology in order to help all students achieve the
levels of understanding and ability ( of the common core ) on the way to becoming science - literate people/society/for all Americans which can think critically, creatively and independently.

All students in a project 2061 schools will have wide ranging of learning experiences, teaching
methods, learning materials, ICT- based, hands-on activities, reflective thinking, solve practical problems etc.

Monday, October 31, 2011


Although there are many positive aspects/strengths of OBE (as we have discussed in previous lectures),
but on the other hand there are also some negative aspects/weaknesses of OBE such as :

1. It is too behaviouristic - the diminishing of education to training students to perform certain prescribed behaviours (observable, measurable and short term/'superficial' behaviours)

2. The emphasis on outcomes (based on detailed evidences) rather than on the processes (the 'art' of teaching, learning and assessment-teachers' intuitions or hunches).

3. Ignore the creative part of learning (or non - cognitive qualities) which difficult to measure or to assess such as motivation, interest and values.

4. Place enormous burden and time-consuming on teachers in terms of acquiring extensive record keeping/documentations.

5. Open to prejudices and biases of teachers on interpretating students' performance or achievement - the questions of validity and reliability of instruments. ethics of assessment and moderation.

6. Moderation (ie training and agreement trials) usually turned out to be a very costly exercise
because of the inclusion of teachers' assessments of students.

Sunday, October 30, 2011



Literacy (vs illiteracy) - difficult concept to define; has various meanings/definitions

What are the minimal or functional level of knowledge and skills/abilities required for all students?

eg language literacy- ability to do basic writing and reading ?
mathematics literacy- ability to do basic counting ?
computer literacy - ability to do basic computing?
science literacy - ability to do ...what?
technology literacy - ability to do... what ?
science and technology literacy...?
science, technology and society literacy...?
science, technology, engineering and mathematics literacy...?

Definition of a literacy of any kind is very complex, has not been generally accepted and varies according to stage of development of countries - underdeveloped, developing and developed countries, achievements of science and technology, the culture of a society, system of education and so on.

Furthermore it is a continuum, developing and achieving scientific literacy is a continuous process and is a lifetime tasks.

What is the right/proper level or standard and benchmark of the so called scientifically literate citizens (for example) of Malaysia?

However common definition of science literacy consists of a set of characteristics :

1. types of scientific knowledge (breadth and depth- concepts, laws, principles, theories etc),

2. skills (broad range of abilities/competencies, science process skills, methods of scientific inquiry and reasoning problem solving skills, etc) and

3. attitudes
(values, motivation, interest, social-cultural implications of science etc) which allows direct teaching, learning and 'easy" assessment in order to achieve agreed scientific literacy for all students after completing compulsory education at the age 0f 18.

Science literacy was often associated with the level of general science education of a country ie
for example in Malaysia - science education (SPM level). It shows a general and broad rather than deep scientific knowledge.

In the context of Malaysia what do you understand by the "scientifically literate person" ?
(refer to KBSM general science curriculum).

Monday, October 17, 2011


Basic questions;

1. What do you want students to have and able to do ?

2. How can you best help students achieve it ?

3. How will you know that they have achieved ?

Main principles:

1. Assessment as an integral part of teaching and learning; providing ongoing feedback, being educative and to improve learning

2. Assessment for learning/understanding - diagnostic and formative (vs assessment of learning)

3. Criterion - referenced; based on pre-determined criteria or outcomes (vs norm-referenced); performance -based assessment.

4. Multiple methods - involve students in various assessment process (quizzes ,tests, exams, projects/lab works, oral presentations, reports, assignments, problem-based tasks/exercises, essays, student portfolio, etc)

5. Based on clear evidences (rather than on intuition or hunches)- good record keeping and documentation

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


If science begins with the systematic study for the understanding of nature and how things in the nature behave, then technology as a body of knowledge begins with the application of science to satisfy or to solve practical human needs and to improve the quality of life.

Both ie science and technology does not grow spontaneously, but is very much associated with the development or the evolution of advanced industrial societies. The relationship between science, technology and society is therefore very clearly intertwined.

For examples:

1. In agriculture, technology has increased productivity in crop yields and reduced the need for intensive labour with the advent of farm machinery.

2. In manufacturing, technology has made available goods in large numbers and industrial labour
has become less strenuous and hazardous and work hours have been reduced.

3. In automobile, technology through the invention of internal combustion engine and the harnessing of electricity for light, heat and power have improved tremendously the quality of transportation.

4. In communication, technology with the invention of telephone, radio, TV, computer, internet, etc have created profound changes in many aspects of life.

5. In medical and health care, technology has improved the quality of medical care and may increase life expectancy.

This list can go on...and on..

The extremely rapid changes in science and technology have also created serious social and moral or ethical problems.

For examples

1. Depletion of natural resources (eg oil, natural gas and coal ) due to the heavy industrial use of raw materials - the problem of overconsumption. The earth does not have infinite resources!

2. Unemployment due to mechanization and automation

3. Environmental problems - air pollution, toxic industrial, chemical and radioactive wastes, destruction of ecosystems etc.

Discuss in what ways science education in our schools can promote the interactions between science, technology and society?

Monday, September 26, 2011


There are few popular curriculum models or orientations adopted by various education systems
throughout the world such as :

1. Competency-based curriculum (focus on performance/competency or skills - mathematical skills
    and competency)

2. Standards-based curriculum (focus on pre-determined criterias/standards eg KSSR and KSSM,

3. Outcome-based curriculum (OBE) (focus on outcomes - outcomes drive teaching and learning)

4. Problem - based curriculum (focus on solving real life problems - problems drive teaching and
    learning eg problem-based learning (PBL))

5. Content (Subject/discipline) - based curriculum (focus on content and mathematical structures
    -  epistemological issues eg how knowledge begins, grows, its potentials and limitations )

6. Humanistic curriculum (focus on developing human potential in a broader sense- self-growth,
    talents or potentials, generic skills eg leadership, communication, team- work, creativity etc)

7. Thinking curriculum (focus on developing thinking skills - the process of mathematical thinking,
    HOTs/KBAT, problem posing, creativity, advanced mathematical thinking etc)

8. Integrated curriculum (focus on integration, holistic, unified or thematic approach
    - integrated mathematics (vs compartmentalized) eg KBSM

Different models/orientations(specific or mixed) based on certain philosophy/ideology/theory/belief system will have different influences on the aims, objectives, selection and organization of contents, skills and values/attitudes (KSA), as well as on teaching, learning and assessment methods.

Monday, September 19, 2011


There are at least 8 important steps ( based on Taba 1962) in curriculum design : (discuss example of maths curriculum - KBSM/KSSM)

1. Diagnosing needs (situational analysis - educational philosophy/ ideology, world-view etc)

2. Formulating aims, goals and specific objectives (learning outcomes)

3. Selecting content (areas -arithmetic, algebra, geometry etc)

4. Organizing content (depth, breadth, scope, etc)

5. Selecting learning experiences (teaching and learning activities based on learning theories such as
    behaviourism, cognitivism and humanism etc)

6. Organizing learning experiences (activities)

7. Evaluating (formative and summative)

8. Checking for balance and sequence

Sunday, September 18, 2011


How knowledge begins ?


1. Biology : The study of biology begins as a study of living things/ organisms (plants, human, animals, micro-organisms etc), their life processes as well their interactions with the environment.

Biology can divided into few main areas such as botany, zoology, anatomy, genetics and ecology .

2. Chemistry : the study of chemistry begins as a study of the changes in matter (related to properties, structure, composition and reactions between atoms, ions, elements and substances) which are followed by changes in energy.

Chemistry can be divided into few main areas such as bio chemistry, physical chemistry, organic and inorganic chemistry.

3. Physics : the study of physics begins as a study of natural phenomena and an attempts to explain it scientifically.

Physics can be divided into two main areas ie classical physics (deals with matter, motion and energy ) and modern physics ( deals with atomic, nuclear, particle physics).

4. Mathematics : the study of mathematics begins as a study of numbers, shape and relations.

Mathematics can be divided into two main areas ie pure mathematics and applied mathematics.

Mathematics developed as a body of knowledge and it can be seen from 4 perspectives : language, science, a way of thinking and as a tool for problem solving.

5. Technology : the study of technology begins with the application of science to practical human needs ( ie increase productivity, improve quality of life etc) in agriculture, engineering, manufacturing, transportation, communication, medicine etc.

Discuss the importance of epistemology of knowledge in teaching and learning of science and mathematics.

Monday, September 12, 2011


Synopsis : This course addresses issues and problems in designing and implementation of mathematics curriculum. The topics that will covered include : factors influencing curriculum design,various models used in curriculum design, several examples of mathematics curricula viewed in terms of contents, pedagogical and psychological aspects. Problems related to the implementation of a particular curriculum model. Current issues and trends of  mathematics curriculum in several developed countries will be discussed.

Main text :

Robert S. Zais (1976); Curriculum - Principles and foundations, Thomas Y. Crowell Co, Inc

Assessment :

1.   Individual assignment and presentation  ( 30 marks )
2.   Group assignment and presentation       ( 30 marks)
3.   Final examination (comprehensive)        ( 40 marks)

Introduction :

The word curriculum comes from a latin root, meaning "racecource"- ie racecourse covered by students in their race toward the finish line (eg getting a diploma, degree, etc)

Concepts of the curriculum - what is the curriculum? many definitions : As an examples

1. Curriculum as the program of studies and course content

2. Curriculum as a (written) plan for action ie plan which guides teaching/instruction

3. Curriculum as planned learning experiences

4. Curriculum as a structured series of intended learning outcomes

Curriculum design most commonly refers to the arrangement of the main components or elements of a curriculum :

1. aims, goals, and objectives - curriculum policy
    ( how does philosophy and ideology/world view influence the curriculum design ? )

2. subject matter or content - curriculum organization (scope, sequence, continuity, and integration;
    models  or orientations -   integrated, thematic, outcome-based curriculum  etc)
    (how does philosophy of mathematics (invented or discovered) influence the curriculum design ?)

3. teaching and learning processes ( activities or experiences) - pedagogical issues/how does the curriculum
    being implemeted? ie curriculum implementation.
    (how does psychological theories (behaviorism, cognitivism, humanistic etc) influence the curriculum

4. assessment and evaluation - assessment of learning, assessment for learning and assessment as learning)
    (how does assessment influence the curriculum design?)

Due to the complexity of the curriculum design, it draws from theories in various fields such as from  philosophy, psychology, sociology etc as a guide for the curriculum design.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Synopsis : This course is intended to enhance students' understanding of epistemological, social and ethical issues in science and technology and its relation to education.

Brief history (including various definition of science) and philosophy of science and technology will be discussed .

Students will be required to discuss critically the social and ethical implications of the advancement of science and technology to the society and their effects on the environment.

The relationships between science, technology and society (STS) and the role of education will be highlighted.


Philosophy can be generally defined as a study of the nature of being and thinking, and more specifically of the human experience in four main areas:

1. Logic - the study of formal structure of arguments and reasoning

2. Metaphysics - the study of nature of being and reality - the theory of reality

3. Epistemology - the theory of knowledge (TOK) - study the origin,validity and limitation of knowledge

4. Ethics (axiology) - the study of moral/ethical issues (good, right, beauty, values, etc) and

Epistemology ( from Greek word episteme means knowledge, logos - the study) is a branch of philosophy (love of wisdom)
that inquires about the sources/origin of human knowledge (eg science - physics, chemistry,biology, mathematics; arts- geography, history, economics, politics, psychology, etc), the role of experience and reasoning in generating knowledge (rationalistic and empiricistic), the changing forms of knowledge that arise from new conceptualizations, its potential and possible limits, and to what extent it can be certain ( exact) or only probable, the question meaning and truth, the question of validity, objectivity, subjectivity, and scepticism/confident doubter/the theory of doubt etc.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


Salah satu pendekatan P&P yg bertambah popular khasnya di peringkat pengajian tinggi terutama di USA dan kini meluas juga ke Malaysia adalah penggunaan konsep atau pendekatan P&P menggunakan kaedah kes HBS yg merentas kurikulum dan tidak terhad seperti selama ini kpd bidang ekonomi, perniagaan dan undang undang shj.

Kaedah ini juga sesuai digunakan dlm bidang pendidikan matematik disemua peringkat pengajian kerana matematik melibatkan pelbagai bentuk penyelesaian masalah, ada yg berbentuk sama ada masalah sebenar (actual/real problems - actual case) yg berlaku dlm kehidupan seharian (mudah atau kompleks) iaitu dlm konteks sebenar spr dlm perniagaan, kejuruteraan dsb atau pun masalah yg direka dan berbentuk latihan yg bertujuan untuk membina kemahiran pelajar menyelesaikan masalah dlm tajuk tajuk tertentu (artificial /simulated problems - simulated case) spr dlm algebra, geometri, kalkulus dsb.

Disamping membolehkan pelajar menguasai isi kandungan secara bersepadu ( sebab sesuatu masalah biasanya melibatkan beberapa konsep matematik sekali gus) pelajar juga dapat belajar
kemahiran berfikir aras tinggi iaitu mereka perlu membuat analisis masalah ( dikenali sbg case analysis) yg melibatkan daya imaginasi dan spekulatif atau inkuiri pelajar.

Format HBS ini terdiri dari 4 bhg atau aktiviti utama (ie four-part HBS format) iaitu flashpoint, background, situation dan flashpoint reprise.

( the flashpoint section opens the case,catches your attention, foreshadows the problem. The background section provides the contextual information; situation section describes the problem and the flashpoint reprise returns you to the starting point of the case so that you can begin your work/solve problem).

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


Setelah sekian lama menyelia dan memeriksa projek sarjana muda, disertasi sarjana dan tesis PhD serta beberapa kali menjadi pemeriksa luar tesis PhD bidang pendidikan matematik di USM, saya mendapati antara kesukaran dan kelemahan utama pelajar pada semua peringkat adalah mereka kurang memahami kepentingan epistemologi ilmu (roots of knowledge) yg mendasari kajian atau penyelidikan masing masing (ie epistemology of research).

Oleh sebab itu universiti universiti khususnya di negara maju mewajibkan pelajar disemua peringkat mengambil kursus ilmu falsafah mengikut kesesuaian bidang pengajian masing masing yg boleh membantu pelajar memulakan penyelidikan dgn asas yg betul.

Untuk memulakan sebarang penyelidikan, rata ratanya pelajar lebih berfikir tentang data yg hendak dikutip dan biasanya mereka tidak menghadapi banyak masalah dalam proses mengumpul data dari pelbagai sumber yg diperlukan.

Tetapi kemudiannya disedari bahawa masalah sebenarnya ialah untuk menentukan apakah maklumat/konsep/ilmu yg diwakili oleh data berkenaan (ie the kind of knowledge it represents or what knowledge that the research presupposes ?).

Dengan pemahaman yg baik mengenai espitemologi ilmu tersebut, pelajar akan mempunyai asas yg kukuh untuk mengkonsepsikan masalah kajian dan membentuk pernyataan masalah (problem statement/research questions), membina kerangka teori kajian, menentukan objektif kajian dan seterusnya merangka metodologi kajian untuk mengutip data yg diperlukan serta menganalisis data berkenaan bagi menjawab persoalan persoalan kajian yg telah ditentukan.

Dengan demikian saya mencadangkan agar pelajar, sebelum memulakan projek penyelidikan hendaklah berusaha bersungguh sungguh memahami epistemologi ilmu bidang pengajian masing terlebih dahulu.

Monday, July 25, 2011

ZADUD-DUAT: Contact Me

ZADUD-DUAT: Contact Me


Pelajar Ph.D saya Ilfi Norman telah berjaya menulis kertas kerja dgn baik dan diterima untuk pembentangan diperingkat antarabangsa di International Seminar and the Fourth National Conference on Mathematics Education bertemakan Building the Nation Character through Humanistic Mathematics Education pada 21-23 Julai 2011 di Yogyakarta State University, Indonesia.

Kertas kerja hasil penyelidikan beliau dibawah seliaan saya bertajuk "Secondary School Students' Abilities Through Problem Posing Activities" telah membuka dimensi baru terhadap aspek pengutaraan masalah dalam pendidikan matematik bersesuaian dgn konsep baru iaitu problem posing: beyond problem solving yg telah ditekan dlm pendidikan matematik diseluruh dunia khasnya oleh negara negara maju. Ini bererti tidak cukup difokuskan kpd kemahiran menyelasaikan masalah shj tetapi hendaklah dilanjutkan lagi kepada kemahiran yg lebih kreatif iaitu problem posing yg akan melibatkan kemahiran inquiri, diskoveri dan metakognitif pelajar.

Aspek ini sepatutnya mendapat perhatian serious dlm sistem pendidikan kita di Malaysia.

Monday, July 18, 2011


Pada 14-16 julai 2011 saya berpeluang menghadiri bengkel diatas bertempat di Hotel Armada, Petaling Jaya bersama lebih kurang 50 pensyarah dari pelbagai IPTA sebagai persediaan untuk menjadi panel penilai program pengajian dalam bidang bidang yang ditentukan mengikut pengkhususan masing masing nanti.

Bengkel ini sangat penting untuk mendapat kata sepakat di kalangan penilai mengenai kaedah penilaian program terbaik seperti mana yang disyorkan oleh para penilai kanan dan diselaraskan oleh pihak penganjur iaitu Malaysian Qualifications Authority (MQA), MOHE, yg bertanggungjawab mengenai isu kualiti program dan akreditasi ijazah yang dikeluarkan oleh IPTA tempatan.

Sekembali dari bengkel ini saya menyedari bahawa tanggungjawab sebagai penilai ini sangatlah berat kerana sebarang keputusan yg dibuat oleh para panel akan memberi kesan langsung terhadap kelayakan pengakreditasiaan sesuatu program/ijazah yg menentukan pula urusan pengiktirafan ijazah oleh pihak berwajib khasnya JPA dan seterusnya menentukan peluang pekerjaan para graduan program pengajian berkenaan.

Walaubagaimana pun kita percaya semua Higher Education Providers (HEP), khasnya universiti, adalah suatu badan yg bertanggangjawab dan sedar tentang keperluan menyediakan program pengajian yg berkualiti tinggi berdasarkan kriteria yg telah ditetapkan dan mereka sedia menyedari implikasi kualiti program berkenaan terhadap peluang pekerjaan siswazah yg mereka lahirkan.

Thursday, July 7, 2011



AREA 1 : Vision,mission,educational goals and learning outcomes (eg involvement of stakeholders,intensity of involvement, feedback for improvement, OBE implementation etc)

AREA 2 : Curriculum design and delivery (eg representation/ involvement of stakeholders, T&L methods, benchmarking, PEO and PO etc)

AREA 3 : Assessment of students (eg process/ methods, soft skills, application of data for improvement etc)

AREA 4 : Student selection and support services (eg criteria, quality of students, academic support, students activities/development programmes, health, sports and recreation, counselling accommodation, etc)

AREA 5: Academic staff (eg qualification and experiences, development/training plan, workload, teacher-student ratio, mentoring system, succession plan etc)

AREA 6: Educational resources ( eg infrastucture(physical), library, teaching aids, ICT facilities (hotspots, e-learning etc), resource centre, labs, etc)

AREA 7 : Programme monitoring and review (eg monitoring procedures, involvement of stakeholders, utilisation of monitoring findings for programme review etc)

AREA 8 : Leadership, governance and administration (eg structure of governance, appraisal system, best practices, non-academic/supporting staff, security and safety, QMS (eg ISO, TQM, 5S etc), internal and external assessors/advisors, satisfaction indexs (on facilities, by students, staff ans employers), employability, awards and recognitions etc)

AREA 9 : Continual quality improvement (CQI) (eg inculcation of quality culture, CQI of all areas above, implementation of programme review etc)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


1. Inquiry is a powerful means of learning substantive science/maths content
2. In doing inquiry, learners can take many different paths to learn the same science/maths content
3. Teachers need to give students responsibility for using the process skills of science/maths (such as observing, questioning, hypothesizing, predicting, planning and investigating, interpreting, communicating etc) to build a conceptual understanding of science/maths content
4. Interesting phenomena can stimulate a rich variety of questions. Questions then drive the investigation process which can either be investigable or noninvestigable. But noninvestigable questions can be turned into investigable ones.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Some of the main role and functions of teachers are as follows:
1. manager
2. observer
3. diagnostician
4. educator
5. organiser
6. decision maker
8. communicator
9. facilitator
10. motivator
11. counsellor
13. researcher
14. leader
15. assessor/evaluator

Sunday, June 12, 2011



if a child lives with criticism
he learns to condemn

if a child lives with hostility
he learns to fight

if a child lives with ridicule
he learns to be shy

if a child lives with shame
he learns to feel guilty

if a child lives with tolerance
he learns to be patient

if a child lives with encouragement
he learns confidence

if a child lives with praise
he learns to appreciate

if a child with fairness
he learns justice

if a child lives with security
he learns to have faith

if a child lives with approval
he learns to like himself

if a child lives with acceptance and friendship
he learns to find love in the world

Dorothy Law Nolta (date unknown)

Friday, June 3, 2011


Public examinations in Malaysia are mainly about summative assessment such as UPSR, PMR, SPM and STPM are called a High Stakes Assessment because:

1. The result or score, matters because it can decide future educational pathways, future groupings and job opportunities of the students.

2. The results also matters because it contributes to the school's overall score (GPS-gred purata sekolah) and the school's league table position. Competition to raise scores is the motivation to spur higher achievement.

3. The result is public. It has a high stake attached to it. The main purpose is to grade,certify or categorise those examined/candidates.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Hints PPS 2883:

1. Baca semua bahan nota kuliah 14 minggu (sbg asas) dgn rujukan tambahan sendiri

2. Konsep rekabentuk kurikulum
3. Langkah langkah pembinaan kurikulum matematik
4. Model model kurikulum matematik
5. Perspektif matematik dan rekabentuk kurikulum
6. Kurikulum matematik KBSM dan Sekolah Bestari
7. Kurikulum berasaskan OBE /pendidikan berasaskan hasil
8. Kurikulum matematik di negara negara maju eg UK dan USA
9. Penambahbaikan kurikulum matematik
10. Kurikulum terkini dan masa depan

11. Pilih 4 soalan sahaja (masa 3 jam)

Hints MPS 1163:

1. Baca semua bahan nota kuliah 14 minggu (sbg asas) dgn rujukan tambahan sendiri

2. Isu epistemologi, sosial dan etika dlm sains dan teknologi
3. Sains sbg suatu falsafah dan pendekatan pengajarannya
4. Evolusi/fasa perkembangan sains dan pengaruhnya thd pendidikan sains
5. Pemikiran saintis dan teknologis
6. Kemahiran berfikir dan kemahiran saintifik
7. Konsep sains, teknologi dan masyarakat (STS) dan pendidikan
8. Model kurikulum sains, teknologi dan masyarakat (STS)
9. Pengajaran sains berasaskan konteks sosial dan teknologi
10. Pendidikan sains dan teknologi untuk kesejahteraan sosial dan ketinggian etika

11. Pilih 4 soalan shj ( masa 3 jam)

Hints SPS4342:

1. Baca semua bahan nota kuliah 14 minggu (sbg asas) dgn rujukan tambahan sendiri

2. Perspektif matematik dan kaitannya dgn P&P
3. Aktiviti aktiviti utama dlm P&P matematik
4. Teori tingkahlaku dan kognitif dlm pendidikan matematik
5. Pendidikan matematik KBSM dan Sekolah Bestari
6. Pendekatan konstruktivis dlm P&P matematik
7. Metakognitif dlm pendidikan matematik
8. Pembelajaran kooperatif dlm P&P matematik
9. Kajian tindakan dlm pendidikan matematik
10. Isu dan trend terkini dlm pendidikan matematik

11. Pilih 4 soalan shj ( masa 2 jam)


Wednesday, April 6, 2011



Science and technology in itself is neutral- in whatever forms and usage, it should always be for the betterment of humankind. Science as a "tool" for better understanding of natural phenomena whereas technology as a "tool" for example to increase productivity and reduce cost of production in any types of industries.

Although the development of science and technology has a lot of advantages especially
in the present context of knowledge-based technology intensive culture, the questions of moral values and ethics are very essential and central so its will require an increasing emphasis on the teaching of values, moral and ethics in the school.

The question of values and ethics should be of major concern at all levels of education, for example the realization that the misplaced or misused of military technology may result in human tragedy, advancement in genetic engineering (eg human cloning or transfer of genes etc) may conflict with moral values and ethics of the society,
negative impact of ICT /internet such as pornography, security, plagiarism and piracy; mass destruction by nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, problems related to global warming or greenhouse effect, intellectual property rights, and so on.

How to minimize negative impact of science and technological advancement through education?

New education movement- expanded concept of humanism philosophy:

The first and the most important principle of this education movement is the doctrine of individual responsibility - each individual is responsible for everything he or she does. It is an ethical philosophy that elevates the individual to the global level, for example we are all responsible for preserving the environment, avoiding nuclear warfare, eliminating poverty, face the challenge of extremism, terrorism , intolerance, etc.

In other words science and technological education philosophy should primarily concern with our humanity - ie with our worth as individuals and with the processes that will make us more human and more civilized through self- regulated moral philosophy.

Discuss critically the implementation and the challenges of humanism philosophy in the context of science and technological education in Malaysia.

Choose one article on moral and ethical issues in science and technology from any international journal and summarize it to at least five main points.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011



There are four levels of curriculum process:

1. Intended/planned/written/formal curriculum
2. Implemented/interpreted/taught curriculum
3. Assessed/tested curriculum
4. Attained/learned curriculum

Evaluation is the process of obtaining necessary information/data for making judgments or decisions about the curriculum (including the written curriculum, subject matter, T&L, assessment, resources etc) as whether to maintain, revise, realign, improve, or to replace the existing curriculum (which maybe outdated) with a new one.

There are three main purpose of curriculum evaluation :

1. To investigate whether the curriculum as designed, planned and implemented is producing the desired results/outcomes (eg better student performance, contribution to the national , human development etc).

2. To provide constant/regular feedback or identify problems and propose possible solutions during the implementation of the curriculum.

3. To identify the strengths and weaknesses of the curriculum after the implementation of the whole curriculum.

Changes in society, advances in science and technology as well as in the subject matter, new understandings about students and learning, new demands from stakeholders (such as employers and government) etc may result in the need of curriculum change (depending on the scale of change; improvement/re-alignment (small)/reformation (medium)/transformation/engineering (major) - discuss with examples

Comprehesive curriculum evaluation should be done periodically (eg 5 year-cycle) and the process of re-designing (repeat the process of designing ) the curriculum should be based on evidences/data-driven or research findings.

There are two main types of curriculum evaluation:

1. Summative evaluation
2. Formative evaluation

Summative evaluation (sometimes called terminal, product or outcome evaluation) is conducted "at the end" of the curriculum implementation process in order to obtain a comprehensive assessment of the quality of a planned curriculum .

Formative evaluation (sometimes called continuous or ongoing evaluation) is conducted during (such as in a number of intermediate points) the curriculum implementation process
in order to obtain a feedback or a guide that can be used to "form" a better finished product.

Both evaluations are necessary depending on the purposes, time and level of generalization/the ways on how evaluation results being used.

If you are given a task to suggest for curriculum improvement from the implementation of mathematics curriculum in your school, describe what steps need to be taken in order to complete your task?

Thursday, March 31, 2011


Three main future trends in S& T education:

1. Relationships/ interdependence of science, technology and society (STS) will be the organizational core of the curriculum vs logical progression or the structure of the discipline or as a pure science/established knowledge approach.

2. Science and technological education for human, social and nature survival (eg population growth, air quality,health and disease, water resources, energy shortages, nuclear wastes, pollution, etc ).

3. S&T education for human capital development, economic growth and providing vocational and technological skills/occupations in industrial, post- industrial era and in a global world/ information age.

Discuss what are the implications for the of science curriculum you will teach?

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Mathematics curriculum in the USA:

Some of the most pressing issues include the following :
1. the ongoing debate over best practices in the teaching of mathematics
2. the influence of standards on curriculum, teaching, learning and assessment
3. the increasing attention being paid to assessment and student outcomes


i. 1983 - A Nation at Risk (a critical self - analysis of status and quality of American education).
ii. Low academic achievement of US mathematics students as compared with other nations such as
    Hong Kong and Japan.
iii. Mathematics education as a powerful indicator of technological advancement.
iv. Implementation of No Child Left Behind (NCLB 2002) policy- set high standards and expectations for all students, regardless of race, ethnicity, family, background or disability.

Moving Forward:

1. In 1985 - Project 2061 : Mathematics Standards (ie Standards-based curriculum;
NCTM Curriculum Standards (1989).
- a reaction to the apparently "low standard" of mathematics education in the USA.

2. Shift of approach in maths education - change from previous dualistic approach (ie minimal maths for the majority of students and advanced maths for a few students) to a common core of maths for all students (standard -based) throughout their school experience.

 Focus on three aspects of mathematics curriculum:

i. the processes of mathematics (eg mathematical thinking - abstraction, representation,symbolic
transformation, Higher Order Thinking (HOTs) etc: mathematical applications etc);

ii. the content or subject matter of mathematics
(ie focus on mathematical significance,
those concepts and skills that can serve as a foundation for a lifetime
of individual growth - arithmetic,algebra,geometry, analysis, discrete mathematics, probability and statistics).

iii. applications and connections of mathematical ideas
- maths should be seen as a part of human experience, emerging from everyday experience;
students should understand both the processes of maths and their interaction with science
and technology;
- students should learn to communicate in the language of maths;
- mathematics should be learning as an integrated whole- as a network of interconnected processes, concepts and procedures;
- students should learn to translate their intuitions about how things work into hypotheses and
mathematical models of the real world;
- students should learn to recognize and formulate/pose problems themselves from situations within and outside of mathematics (ie problem posing beyond problem solving- to develop creative thinkers)
apply mathematical modeling to solve problems that arise in other disciplines, such as science, technology, business etc).

The ultimate goal of teaching mathematics is to help all students develop mathematical power and to think mathematically (ie to develop powerful mathematical thinkers) and effective problem solvers ( ie not limited only to solve well defined/routine maths problems).

Discuss how the above focus of  maths curriculum in the USA can be adapted and implemented in the contexts of Malaysian schools? Give your examples.

Pertubuhan IKRAM Malaysia: Go to

Pertubuhan IKRAM Malaysia: Go to "Go to"

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Introduction :

Personal, social and ethical issues should be the focal points of science and technological education at all levels of education.

On personal needs of the student, science teaching should develop (i) scientific knowledge, (ii) scientific process skills, and (iii) scientific attitudes and values.

Scientific knowledge - facts, concepts, definitions, laws and theories etc.

Scientific skills- process skills (observing, classifying, identifying, inferring, formulating etc and manipulative skills ( designing experiments, determining procedures, controlling variables, etc).

Scientific attitudes and values - critical mindedness, open mindedness, looks for evidence through an empirical approach, honesty, objectivity, willingness to change/flexible, suspended judgement, questioning attitudes, strong curiousity etc.

Science and technology is part of the society in which it exists. The goals and values of a society directly influence the existence and development of science and technology.

In other words science teaching should for examples; make students aware of good health practices, solve contemporary social and environmental problems (drugs abuses, food additives, ecological problems, waste of energy, water pollution, etc).

Tuesday, March 22, 2011



The main aim of the KBSM mathematics is to develop analytical, critical, systematic and logical thinking, as well as to acquire skills to solve problems. By doing so, pupils will learn to use mathematical knowledge effectively in their daily activities. In addition, they will learn to be responsible and appreciate the importance and excellent features contained in mathematics.


The objectives of KBSM mathematics is for students :

1. To know and understand concepts,definitions, laws, rules and theorems relating to numbers and space.

2. To consolidate and widen the use of skills in addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

3. To master basic skills (other than basic operations ) such as:

- performing estimations and approximations relating with numbers and measurements.

- recognizing various shapes in the surrounding environment and their characteristics.

- measuring and constructing by using basic mathematical instruments.

- collecting,recording, representing and interpreting data

- recognizing and representing relations mathematically.

4. To master skills of using algorithm to obtain the required results.

5. To master skills of solving problems involving steps of interpretation of problem, planning the strategies, implementation of strategies and checking of answers obtained.

6. To utilize mathematical knowledge and skills in managing daily activities through effective and responsible manner.

7. To acquire and appreciate the ability of working in a logically,systematically, heuristically and accurately.

The KBSM (1998- Smart school's edition) focuses on 5 main aspects namely:

1. problem solving in mathematics (recently new concept : problem posing- beyond problem soving)
2. communication in mathematics (oral.written and representation)
3. reasoning in mathematics (inductive, deductive, logical, critical, creative, HOTs)
4. mathematical connections (procedural, conceptual, contextual, daily lives etc)
5. application of technology (calculators, computers, software, internet, etc)

Saturday, March 19, 2011



1. Proposed by Kurt Lewin ( 1946) in USA and was further developed by Kolb (1984) and Carr and Kemmis (1986).

2. Usually used to study educational problems related to the T&L activities in the classroom (naturalistic) and subsequently correct them so as to improve the T&L practices (improvement).

3. It can be conducted on an individual or collaborative basis by means of systematic self-reflection- develop a concept of teacher as a researcher in the classroom (practitioner research).

How to conduct it ?

1. The process of AR can be visualized as a spiral of cycles of action that comprises 4 main steps ie Plan, Act, Observe and Reflect. (PAOR)

2. Plan- problem identification/statement (ie reflection of previous practices), determine the specific focus and objectives of the research; eg How to improve problem solving skills involving word problems by using Polya Method among form 4 (social science) students ?

Act-implement the research plan (taking actions/intervention);

Observe - using suitable method and technique collecting data/fact finding about the results
of the action/evidences;

Reflect- analyze the data and interpret the results/ research findings- evaluate the actions
(prepare report and decide follow up action).

4. The results of the first cycle may lead to the identification of a new problem, and thus stimulates the second cycle of AR.

5. Teacher/researcher/reflective practitioner work as an active participant(involvement) with the subject/students, not as an outside expert work on the students.

Characteristics of AR:

1. Focus on one issue/case/problem only (educational/T&L problem-specific/small scale -qualitative study) at a time (one cycle).eg effectiveness of T&L materials, methods, techniques, group work, remedial or enrichment materials/activities etc)

2. Focus on problem solving rather than testing the hypothesis/theory or making generalizations (as in conventional research).

3. Focus on narrowing the gap between theory and practice.

4. Using systematic self reflection/reflective thinking skills/inquiry in every step of the research.

Based on one problem of learning mathematics faced by the students in your classroom , discuss how you can use action research to solve the problem and subsequently improve your teaching practice.

Thursday, March 17, 2011



The philosophy and approach of STS (science, technology and society) is the unifying concept of science, technology and society with the concept of acquiring knowledge, skills and attitudes so that the goals of science education can be achieved by a coherent and integrated manner.

Its contrasted with traditional science curriculum where science content (ie physics, chemistry and biology) is taught in isolation from "technology" and "society".

The main aim of this approach is to help students appreciate the implications of scientific and technological development to the society.

How to implement it?

1. Any suitable social, technological, environmental and ethical issues (eg balanced diet, air pollution, nuclear energy, drugs abuse, animal experimentation, genetic engineering, green technology, energy conservation,etc) can be used as the focus for the teaching and learning of a particular science content (eg classes of food- proteins, fats; metal, energy, animal, plants, cells, structure of atom, chemical bonds, acids and bases, heat, light, energy, etc).

2. T&L should be student-centered through active learning involving group work, cooperative learning, inquiry-discovery, investigational work, constructivist approach , problem-based learning (PBL) etc.

Advantages of STS approach ( to rectify the inadequacies of traditional science curriculum)

1. to increase public (science for all policy) and students' interest and motivation in learning science and technology (for eg in Malaysia, ratio (science) 60 : 40 (arts) )

2. reflects the multidisciplinary nature of science and technology and provides a wide interpretation of science and technology (ie a "big picture" of science)

3. provides a contextual, problem solving and consideration of social, ethical and values in learning science and technology.

4. provides a balance view of science as a formal abstract concepts with the concrete and operational aspect and taught in a connected and meaningful manner. ( ie view science a human activity).

5. to increase intellectual capabilities such as critical and creative thinking
and development scientific and technological inquiry; prepare future scientists, engineers, technologists and citizens with good level of scientific literacy.

6. (In the context of Malaysia) to develop a creative, holistic, integrated and balanced person intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically as formulated in the National Education Philosophy(NEP).

In STS curriculum, traditional science content should not be "watered down", but it should be embedded in a social and technological context.

Discuss with suitable examples to what extent the STS philosophy and approach has been implemented in science education curriculum in Malaysian secondary schools .

Monday, March 14, 2011



1. OBE is a student-centered learning philosophy introduced by William Spady (1994) - the father of OBE. It is an educational movement accepted worldwide especially in developed countries such as UK, USA, Australia, etc. A change from inputs (time, materials, textbook,
computer, teaching etc) to outcomes (what we expect students to know and be able to do?).

2. Basic premise - all students can learn and succeed although some may take a little longer than the others.

3. OBE 4 main principles : clarity of focus on outcomes; design backward; high expectations for success; expanded learning opportunities for success.

How to implement ? :

1. Focus on outcomes - cognitive, affective and psychomotor (National Education Philosophy/NEP, vision, mission, Program educational objectives/PEO- few years (4-5 years after graduation), program learning outcomes/PLO (upon graduation), course/subject learning outcomes/CLO (upon subject completion - what do I want my students to be able to do as a result of my teaching in this subject ), not on processes (what TL approaches or activities do I adopt to achieve the intended LO- active learning, cooperative learning, problem- based learning, inquiry-discovery etc) or inputs (resources available to the students).

2. Design backward - outcomes as a starting point (ie from NEP...CLO) , deliver forward (from or in the classroom/ labs etc ,ie teaching and learning activities are directed towards the achievement of the desired outcomes). OBE does not specify or require any particular approach/methods of teaching and learning. It is flexible. Students should be given more opportunities or chances to achieve the LOs. Outcomes drive the learning. Time is not the main factor or obstacle.

3. Outcome - based assessment and evaluation ( tests, projects, general exam, tracers study, alumni, stakeholders feedback, etc). Standards of performance should be raised and made achievable.

The whole process of OBE does not end only with assessment, continuous quality improvement (CQI) is a must.

OBE principles should be implemented consistently, systematically, creatively and simultaneously through out the school curriculum.

Discuss critically the strengths and weaknesses of implementing the OBE principles in mathematics curriculum.

Assignment : Based on a particular curriculum (eg form 4 KBSM textbook), draw a curriculum mapping ie topics vs objectives according to OBE principles and explain clearly with suitable examples on how to achieve the objectives of that curriculum.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011



1. Science- the study of natural world/environment
2. Technology- the study of artificially constructed environment
2 Society- the study of social environment

Intersection of science, technology and society or science-technology-society (STS) education in school science has become a world-wide educational movement, particularly in UK, North America, and Australia in the 1970s and 1980s.

In the context of teaching and learning, students strive to understand their everyday experiences through their social environment, their artificially constructed environment, and their natural environment.

In a traditional science curriculum, science content is taught in isolation from technology and society or from students' technological and social worlds. In science- technology-society (STS)
curriculum, science content is connected and integrated with the students' everyday worlds or experiences which is more meaningful to them.

In other words, the teaching of science through STS refers to teaching about natural phenomena in a manner that embeds science in the technological and social environments of the student or science content is embedded in a social-technological context.

STS education is broader in scope than those of the traditional academic science curriculum. The main focus is on the issues and problems of science and technology within society. (eg energy - energy conservation, pollution, waste materials, ethical issues, values, etc)

STS science teaching is student centered as contrasted to the teacher or content centered in the traditional science teaching.

Discuss how STS approach has been used in the KBSM integrated science curriculum (choose any topic from form 4-5 textbook as an example) by critically analyse 3 aspects of the curriculum ( science content, skills and attitudes; teaching, learning and assessment methods) and compared with STS approach and philosophy.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


Scientific research is a systematic, empirical, controlled, and critical investigation/inquiry of hypothetical propositions/relationships about the presumed relations among phenomena. The research begins with gathering information about a phenomena by careful observations on a situation (mainly by using our five senses, i.e sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch).

Based on the observations, an inference/good guess/tentative explanation of a given situation is made which may not be true. A hypothesis which identify the relationship between variables is formulated and then tested through a carefully planned and controlled experiment.

By collecting, analyzing and interpreting data, then the conclusion is made whether the hypothesis is accepted or rejected.

Scientists should adopt scientific attitudes and noble values in all their research and investigations. Observations should be done objectively,carefully and patiently. Scientists have to be rational, critical and analytical when collecting, analyzing, interpreting data and making conclusions of the research. Each of those values not only increases the validity of the research or investigations, but will also enhance one's scientific thinking and abilities to solve problems in science as well as in other fields.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


 Background : Moving from traditional curriculum( before 1970) towards new maths curriculum                                (1970s-1990s, KBSM) to smart schools curriculum/21 st century curriculum, KSSM )

1. Introduction of Smart Schools (Sekolah Bestari)   - one of the seven flagship applications in the
    Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) ;1995.

-  democratization of education/ education for all policy
   offering equal access or opportunities to quality education.

- it is not about technology/ICT alone but rather about "smart learning".
- full implementation in about 10, 000 schools by 2010 

2. Approach of curriculum delivery : self directed, self -paced and self- accessed.

3. Major focus - to develop 5 main smart skills:
                    learning skills (ie how to learn);
                    thinking skills ( ie critical and creative thinking skills/KBKK, HOTs).
                    facilitating skill for teachers;
                    smart assessment(criterion-based, SBA/PBS, PT3)
                    ICT competent .

4. Reduce current exam-oriented approach in teaching and learning instead moving towards on schools based assessment ,on-line assessment, holistic,criterion-referenced, multiple approaches and on-going/formative/developmental.

5. T&L should cater or accommodate different learning abilities (slow. average and fast learners),
learning and cognitive styles ( eg sensory/concrete/practical or intuitive/abstract/theories; visual or verbal; inductive or deductive;active or reflective; sequential or global/holistic learners) and the uniqueness of every individual (student-centered learning  and humanistic approach).

Wednesday, February 16, 2011



Through science process skills and manipulating skills, scientific knowledge grows (with its potential, possible limits and a question of validity) and form the basic or the building blocks of science.

There are six main types of scientific knowledge :

1. Fact- event, phenomena, statement or information accepted to be true based on empirical evidence( eg speed of light, nucleus of an atom consists of protons and neutrons, g=9.8ms-2

2. Concept- idea or group of ideas (construct), object or process(eg density, force, momentum etc)

3. Hypothesis - general/conjectural statement of the relationship between two or more variables anticipated to be true but has to be proven empirically(eg the longer the length of the pendulum, the longer its period of oscillation)

4. Principle- generalized concept which links together a number of other concepts(eg Archimedes principle)

5. Theory- a connected/interrelated statements, concepts or principles which are generalized (have to be verified by experiment) to describe, explain and predict a phenomena.

6. Law- principle which are repeatedly and empirically proven to be true but its truthfulness may not be absolute( eg Boyle's law, Charles' law, Newton's law etc)- it is a relative truth !

Science process skills and manipulating skills should be developed through scientific method


The basic steps of scientific method includes:

1. Identify the problem
2. Formulating a hypothesis
3. Designing an experiment
4. Making observations
5. Recording data from the experiment
6. Analyze the data and confirming hypothesis
7. Forming conclusions

Main characteristics of the scientific method:

1. The method is systematic - this implies a procedure that is marked by thoroughness and has a certain regularity.

2. The method is empirical- grounded in reality ie based on actual data.

3. The method is objective- the results can be replicated by other scientists.

4. The method is logical- the results rationally follow from evidence.

5. The method is critical and analytical in nature

6. The method is an inquiry and investigative in nature.

There are two main types of scientific approaches which contribute to the development of scientific knowledge.

1. Inductive approach is characterized by a strictly empirical approach through repeated experiment/observation of reality in order to make a conclusion.

eg experiment : heating one end of metal rod
observation : the other end gets hot
conclusion : metal conducts heat

2. Deductive approach is a form of inference or a process of reasoning by which conclusion is drawn by logical inference from given premises.

premise: all metals conduct heat
premise : object A(new object found) is a metal
conclusion (or deduction): object A conducts heat

The wheel of science is circular, depending on where one starts the wheel ie from inductive or deductive approach. Both attempt to establish a valid and verifiable knowledge through the correct use of a scientific method. It is a process of continuous inquiry, investigation and discovery.

Pedagogical question - How best can we develop methods of teaching scientific knowledge to our
students in secondary schools?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Integrated curriculum model : Why integrate?

1. The main goal of KBSM (1989) is to develop potentials of the students in a holistic and integrated manner (ie intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically balanced)
within the context of National Philosophy of Education.

2. Mathematics should be seen as an integrated whole (ie connections or relationships of mathematical topics) not as a discrete or fragmented topics. (eg relationships between fraction, ratio, proportion and percentage)

3. Mathematics as an integral part of human experiences, activities and problem solving, emerging from everyday life, interaction with other disciplines especially with science and technology.

How to integrate?

Integration of mathematical contents through three main components ( ie thematic approach):

1. Numbers such as counting and calculating ( ie whole numbers, fractions, decimals, percentages multiples and factors etc

2. Shapes - familiarizing with topics such as angles ,lines, polygons, circle,solid , trigonometry, earth etc.

3. Relations- understanding rules, laws and relationships in the topics such as set, functions and graphs, matrix, statistics, probability etc.

How to implement in teaching and learning?

1. Teaching and learning as an integrated approach ie integration of mathematics as problem solving, mathematics as communication, mathematics as reasoning and mathematical connections.

2. Balance between understanding of concepts and mastering of skills.

3. Apply mathematical skills in real problem solving situations.

4. Inculcate historical elements into mathematics teaching and learning.

5. Emphasize on mathematical thinking strategies.

6. Using inquiry- discovery method

Discuss the factors that may lead to the problems in the implementation of the current KBSM mathematics curriculum in schools.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Metacogniton means thinking about thinking ie thinking about one's own thinking process or
knowledge about our own cognitive processes.

It is the ability to monitor one's current level of understanding (self-monitoring) and determine when it is not adequate, be aware of the improvements needed(self-awareness) or correct/modify the faulty thinking involved(self-corrective actions).

Metacognition involves self reflection is an important part of an active learning especially in solving mathematical problems which supports the development of critical and creative thinking skills.

Main operations of metacognition (for example in solving mathematical problem by using Polya Model - understand the problem, device/select a plan/strategy, carry out the plan and looking back ) are planning, executing/implementing, monitoring and evaluating.

Ideally, students should be able to assess their thinking before(do I know what to do?- given data, what to find? , during (am I on the correct track? - using right formula/method?- should I consider alternatives?) and after a problem solving process ( Is the answer correct/reasonable?- check the solution).

In other words it is a self-regulated/controlled or self-directed of learning which promotes independent learners among the students. Metacognition is just as any skill, it improves with practice.

Metacognitive skills can be develop through cooperative learning/group work where students can think aloud( describe precisely their thinking), sharing their thought via description and/or visual representation with other students in the group.

Examine a mathematics textbook (choose one problem in form 4 mathematics), design teaching and learning activities which incorporate metacognitive skills in that lesson.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Scientific knowledge is the product of continuous process of inquiry which begins and grows through the acquisition of scientific skills by the scientists:

Scientific skills can be divided into 2 types: Science process skills (SPS) and manipulative skills (MS). SPS involve cognitive processes that are related to thinking skills(critical and creative thinking). MS involve psychomotor skills related to handling of instruments in carrying out experiments.

Some of the main science process skills are as follows: observing, classifying, measuring and using numbers, making inference, predicting, communicating, using space-time, interpreting, defining operationally, manipulating variables, making hypotheses and experimenting.

In each SPS there may be one or more thinking skills involved.

Making observation (eg movement of an object)
- characterizing (eg force, mass, velocity)
- relating (eg F=ma)

Careful observations of nature are main sources of scientific knowledge

- looking at similarities and differences (eg animals and plants)
- compare and contrast (eg types of animals)

Measuring and using numbers
- looking for pattern
- sequencing

Making Inference (draws early conclusion)
- relating (one variable with another variable)
- looking at similarities and differences
- analyzing

Predicting ( eg weather, and wave)
- relating
- visualizing (mental representation)
- searching for patterns

Communicating (verbal, mathematical, symbolic etc)
- involve all thinking skills

Using space - time (eg study of shape, motion and change; relativity theory)
- sequencing
- arranging
- relating

Interpreting (eg function and graph )
- summarizing
- generalizing
- meaning

Defining operationally (eg force, momentum, heat etc)
- making analogy
- visualizing
- analyzing

Controlling variables (eg pressure and volume)
- characterizing
- looking at similarities and differences
- relating
- analyzing

Making hypothesis
- relating
- predicting

Experimenting - involve all thinking skills

Some of the main manipulative process skills are as follows: using equipment/ apparatus, handling apparatus safely, keeping safely all scientific equipments and apparatus, careful handling of live specimens (in biology), mixing solutions, pouring solutions etc (in chemistry) etc.

Discuss in what ways the understanding on how knowledge of grows will effect the role of science teachers in the classroom?

Sunday, February 6, 2011


Learning processess are complex, behaviorist psychology cannot explain all learning.

Theoretical inadequacy/limitations to explain all that our students learn and do.

Learning is not only limited to observable behaviour that always simple and straightforward but it is more of thought processes (or cognition).

Learning as internal process (cognitive procesess) that cannot be observed directly; changes in behaviour is a reflection of internal change (the cognitive structure) in the student’s mind.

Major focus is on knowing (understanding,memory, thinking, perception,meaning,decision making, sense making,problem solving, concepts or ideas etc)
Main representative theorists:
  • Piaget ( cognitive development theory)
  •   Bruner (discovery learning)
  •   Ausubel (meaningful learning)
  • Gagne’ (classification of human learning)

With cognitive approach, the emphasis in teaching and learning has shifted from product to process (ie process of mathematical thinking , process of problem solving etc)

Saturday, January 22, 2011


Contoh pemikiran kritis :

1. mencirikan- menyatakan ciri/sifat sesuatu konsep (eg segitiga, fungsi,luas dsb)

2. membanding dan membezakan- menentukan persamaan dan perbezaan (eg hubungan dan fungsi, pembolehubah bebas dan bersandar, membezakan fakta dgn pendapat)

3. mengumpul dan mengelaskan- mengumpul, menyusun, membuat urutan, mengkategori mengikut ciri /kriteria tertentu (eg no genap, perdana, jujukan aritmetik dan geometri)

4. menganalisis- mencerakinkan maklumat (eg menganalisis maklumat dlm masalah berayat)

5. mentaksir dan menilai- mentaksir maklumat, menilai ketepatan, kemusabahan sesuatu maklumat (data, hujah,andaian, definisi, pendapat,cadangan, pernyataan,sumber)

Contoh pemikiran kreatif:

1. menjana idea baru- mengemukan, mencetus idea, mencadang alternatif( eg kaedah baru penyelasaian masalah)

2. membuat inferens-membuat kesimpulan awal drp data, maklumat, pemerhatian dan ujikaji yg perlu dibuktikan kebenarannya.

3. menghubungkait- mencari perkaitan diantara pembolehubah, menentukan hubungan suatu konsep dgn konsep lain.

4. mensintesis- menggabungkan, menyepadukan idea idea, merekabentuk, menggubal model

5. membuat gambaran mental- menvisualisasi/menggambarkan/membayangkan dlm minda/mengkonsepsualisasi sesuatu idea/situasi/memperluaskan daya imaginasi (eg konsep had, infiniti, kadar)

6. merekacipta - menghasilkan idea asli, membuat inovasi/penambahbaikan/pengubahsuaian kaedah tanpa terikat kpd kaedah yg lazim.

Friday, January 21, 2011


Cooperative learning began with the strong belief that learning is most effective if students are actively involved in sharing ideas and work cooperatively to complete an academic tasks.

There five essential elements of cooperative learning:

1. positive interdependence- the success of one learner is dependent on the success of the other learners.

2. promotive interaction- individual can achieve promotive interaction by helping each other, exchange resources, challenging each other's conclusions, providing feedback, encouraging and striving for mutual benefits.

3. individual accountability- teachers should assess the amount of effort that each member is contributing by random randomly calling students to present their group's work.

4. Interpersonal and small-group skills- teachers should provide opportunities for group members to know each other, accept and support each other, communicate accurately and resolve differences constructively.

5. Group processing- teachers should provide opportunities for the class to assess group progress. Group processing enables group to focus on good working relationship, facilitates the learning of cooperative skills and ensures that members receive feedback.

Cooperative learning represents a shift in educational paradigm from teacher-centered approach to a more student-centered learning in small group.

The main problems and challenges which arise in incorporating cooperative learning :

1. fear of the loss of content coverage- CL often take longer than conventional methods, it may waste a lot time to complete the taks.

2. students lack the skills to work in group- teachers are often concern with students' participation in group activities.

3. do not trust students in acquiring knowledge by themselves- teachers have the knowledge and expertise but they have to tell their students what and how to learn.

4. lack of familiarity of some teachers with CL methods- intensive in-service course should be implemented to overcome the problem.

5. teacher need to prepare extra materials for CL class use- require a lot of extra work, time and new burden for teachers.