The college offers two years Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) course as per NCTE (Norms and Procedure) Regulations, 2014 to both pre-service (fresher) and in-service (approved by Govt. of West Bengal and duly deputed) teachers adhering to the curriculum approved by Baba Saheb Ambedkar Education University (Erstwhile The West Bengal University of Teachers’ Training, Education Planning and Administration). Apart from the core course a candidate has to study one of the following school subjects which he/she has studied at the UG/PG level with at least 300 marks -

Life Science (Zoology, Botany and Physiology only)
Physical Science (Physics and Chemistry only)
Mathematics
Language (Bengali and English only)
Social Science (History, Geography and Education only)


Medium of Instructions: Bengali and English only.

Foundation of Science teaching

UNDERSTANDING SCIENCE

Being a Science teacher, your first responsibility is to facilitate your learners in understanding the Science. Science is not a new subject for them, as it has already been introduced to them at upper primary (Class VI-VIII) level. The focus of Science teaching at elementary level was on engaging learners in learning principles of Science through familiar experiences, working with hands-on to design simple technological units and modules and continuing to learn more on environment and health through various activities (NCF-2005). At Secondary level, you have to engage your learners in learning Science as a composite discipline i.e. as an integrated discipline Science and not as segregated subjects like Physics, Chemistry, Biology, etc. They need to understand the nature of Science as well as what comes under domain of Science. Let us discuss, how will you facilitate them in understanding what is Science.

 What is Science? 

Perhaps, India may be the only nation with a constitutional provision as fundamental duty ‘to develop scientific temper’ among its citizens. Article 51A heart is: “To develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform”. This reflects how we thought about Science. For us, Science is neither a pedagogical discipline nor a group of certain subjects. We have perceived Science as a way of life with rational thinking. This feeling and understanding should be inculcated among learners since childhood so that they can perceive Science as a part of their life. Our scientific traditions are ancient and our perception about Science is associated with the notions like logic, rationality, truth, knowledge and intelligence. 

It is never easy to answer the question, what exactly the Science is. For some Science is what the scientists practice. For others, it is organized knowledge disciplines like Physics, Chemistry, Biology, etc., but no one can answer this question exactly. This leads us to think bit deeper.

 Etymologically word ‘Science’ has been derived from the Latin word ‘scientia’ which means ‘knowing’. Before the 18th century, Science was referred as ‘natural philosophy’. Still for some, it is a title; for some, it is a concept, few perceive it as a method or process while for some, it is inquiry. If we go through philosophical origin and understanding of term ‘Science’, we can see various perceptions about Science and this makes it more interesting and challenging. Similarly, when you look back towards your own childhood and school days, you can find, what was your own perception about Science. 

When your teachers introduced Science as a subject for systematic study and divided it into many areas like: Physics, Chemistry, Zoology, Botany, do you think, at that time, you understood what Science is? Many of you may answer in the negative. Now how will you answer the question: What is Science? 

Let us reflect on it. Science is a process of learning. It is very different from other areas of study because “the way to learn Science is to do Science”. You can propose it as subject, which always tests ideas with the help of evidences collected from the worlds around us. Some of the important characteristics of Science which need to be shared with learners are: • You can help learners to understand that Science does not explain supernatural myths rather it focuses on the natural world around them. For example, Science helps to understand growth in plants, characteristics of animals, etc. • Learners should understand that Science is not merely a collection of evidences of happenings; rather it attempts to understand happening through analysis, testing and verification. • You can give examples of Scientists working in different areas and ask learners to find out what is common in their working. Learners will soon realize that scientists work on testing of ideas, that are generated and their verification with the help of evidences generated or collected.

 Science is actually an integral part of our daily life. As a teacher you can help learners to understand that scientists are as human as we. They also have feelings of joy, rivalry, competition, success, failure, etc. as any human being. As a teacher of Science at secondary level, you should ensure that learners should overcome the traditional stereotype/mental blocks related to Science like Science text books are heavy, scientists are persons wearing lab coats and working on microscopes, a natural scientist works in the rainforest, or busy in writing some equations and formula on a chalkboard…. all such images are the reflection of one aspect of Science, but do not offer a full picture. It is always a debate that what is Science and what is not. 

As a Science teacher, we must think on certain issues like why there is no suffix ‘Science’ with subjects like Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Zoology, Botany, etc., and why there is always a suffix ‘Science’ with subjects like Social Science, Political Science, Management Science, Environmental Science, Health Science, Library Science, etc.