24th – 26th January 2017

Hosted by the Science and Technology Education Cluster, School of Education, University of KwaZulu-Natal

Venue: School of Education, University of KwaZulu-Natal (Edgewood campus)

Conference Theme: Professional Learning of Science, Mathematics and Technology for Environmental Sustainable Action and Community Development

Objectives of the Conference:

  • The advancement of Science, Mathematics and Technology through Environmental Sustainable Action and Community Development
  • Fostering active engagement of all persons (researchers, teachers, members of government, community and industrial organisations), for environmental sustainable actions
  • Engaging Physical Sciences, Life Sciences and Mathematics teachers in curriculum related environmentally sustainable issues in a theoretical and practically based approach
  • Fostering a sense of community among researchers, teachers, members of community, government and industrial organisations
  • Promoting research and civil action to improve and develop Science and Technology programmes/curricular/actions in response to current and future needs.
  • Organise partnerships among relevant stakeholders in particular geographical areas for initiating, enhancing and promoting environmentally sustainable actions.

Who should attend the conference?

The conference is open to anyone who is interested in Science, Mathematics and Technology for Environmental Sustainable action and Community development.


The programme will commence on Tuesday morning, 24th January 2017 with a welcome from respective person and a plenary by a plenary speaker. There will be four plenary over the three days, presented at various times. Other presentations include short papers for 30 minutes and poster presentations and a fieldtrip is included. The conference ends on the 26th January, 2017.

The invited speakers are:

  1. Professor Heila Lotz-Sisitka – South African National Research Foundation Chair (Tier 1) in Transformative Social Learning and Green Skills Learning Pathways, Rhodes University. She has over twenty years’ of national and international experience in environment and sustainability education and learning, research, policy and consultancy work related to human capacity development, social learning, education system development, and social-ecological change. She has contributed actively to the post-apartheid education transformation process in South Africa via various national curriculum leadership roles including co-ordinator of the national Environmental Education Curriculum Development Initiative; member of a Ministerial Implementation Committee on Human Rights and curriculum development; and Chairperson of the National Environmental Standards Generation Body. She recently led the development of South Africa’s first ever Environmental Sector Skills Plan, which pioneered a systems approach to thinking about environmental education and capacity development in the country and is now directing the national Green Skills system building programme for the post-schooling system;
  2. Professor Doris Elster is a researcher and science educator at the Institute of Science Education, Full Professor and Head of the Department of Biology Education, Universityt Bremen, Germany. Her core field of research is about teachers’ professional development and inquiry-based science education (IBSE). Since 2010 she leads the educational lab Backstage Science. The goal of the lab is to promote science communication and the knowledge exchange of scientists with the public, teachers and students. She has much experience in the development, testing and evaluation of innovative teaching and learning modules, especially in interdisciplinary projects linking persons with different expertise in Communities of Practice. She and her team develop and test concepts and materials for inquiry-based learning in a context of education for sustainable development. She is scientific partner within the Graduate School NanoCompetence and works on the development of educational and communicational strategies for the transfer of scientific knowledge in the context of nanotechnology with and for society. In addition she is scientific partner of the Creative Unit FaBiT (Subject-related Educational Sciences in Transformation). Here she supports teacher candidates and in-career teachers in the development of inclusive teaching concepts and materials to promote teaching and learning in a heterogeneous society.
  3. Dr. Agnaldo Arroio, Faculty of Education, University of São Paulo, Brazil has experience in Chemistry, Communication and Education, with emphasis on Audiovisual Communication in Education, acting on the following topics: Teaching chemistry, Information and Communication Technologies, Communication media in education and science communication. He is a member of many editorial boards and Science Education Research Brazilian Association, ESERA, ICASE, IOSTE and the IOSTE Representative for South America. He is presently working with the Department of Health in Mozambique to promote education about diseases to communities. He is a Supervisor for Master and Doctor Study Program in Education and Science Education of University of São Paulo.
  4. Professor (HP) Dr. Vincentas Lamanauskas – Director of the Scientia Socialis, Chairman of the Scientific Methodical Centre “Scientia Educologica“, and Professor and Head researcher at  Šiauliai University, Republic of Lithuania. He has extensive knowledge, skills and experience as a specialist in Natural Sciences education, in Central and Eastern Europe, where he is engaged in teaching, learning, researching and the promotion of Natural Sciences in the respective countries. His expertise in writing and publication is evidenced in his work as an Editor in Chief of eight international journals, and a member of the Editorial Board of ten international journals. He has presented numerous seminars, workshops and worked collaboratively with international colleagues on various topics and projects, including the preparation of scientific articles and academic writing for journals. He is also an international expert in the European Union programme HORIZON2020 and an expert at the Agency for Science, Innovation and Technology (MITA), Lithuania.

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