Become a Future Science Leader!

No matter whether you’re an aspiring Biologist, Physicist, Chemist, or inventor, the IB Diploma is a fantastic stepping stone to studying your subject at university. However, an ambitious student can be left directionless with so many choices and questions – which subject should I follow? How do I break in to the science industry? With that question in mind our academics set about creating the perfect course for aspirant scientists - “Future Science Leader”. What is it? Future Science Leaders is a new ...

OSC Biology guides

This blog was written by Ashby Merson-Davis, an experienced IB teacher and author of a range of OSC Biology guides. When the IB started to expand in the UK it quickly became clear that there was a dearth of textbooks. HL could get by with A Level texts but there was nothing for SL. I decided to write an SL text and then wrote to a number of schools in Europe to see if they would be interested. It was basic, photocopied, ...

Nature of Science

This month has seen the first examinations of the new syllabus and the Online Curriculum Centre (OCC) is awash with comments and discussions. Some of the comments I have read relates to disappointment that the Nature of Science had a marginal role within the papers. Though NoS was perhaps not as prominent in this exam as some may have thought, it does not mean it is peripheral to the course. Good science teaching requires a sound understanding of the Nature of Science. It should, ...

Computational Modelling

With the inclusion of computational modelling within the acceptable list of internal assessments (I find it a big struggle to call them IA's) for the Group 4 sciences I have become intrigued by the possibilities they provide. I have also read read in some quarters of a certain resistance to their inclusion within student internal assessments as they feel there is a lack of complexity and sophistication in their use.  I have continued to explore the possibilities that include sufficient rigor ...

A study of fish stocks

Depleted global fish stocks represents a focus for C5: Population ecology. The Gulf of Maine is warming 99% faster than the worlds oceans and is a major contributing factor in the declining cod stocks within that region. Cod is a species adapted to cold water and the increased temperatures  brought about by climate oscillations in the Atlantic and the Pacific have led to an significant decline in the number of fry produced by spawning female cod and fewer are surviving to ...

Using a simulation for your IA

There are several options available to you when conducting your Internal Assessment as part of the Biology diploma. These include: 1.Hands-on experiment 2.Use of database for analysis and modelling 3.Extraction and graphical analysis from a database 4.Simulation (interactive/open-ended) 5.Hybrid hands-on + spreadsheet/database 6.(Qualitative and quantitative data are valid). This posting is focussing on computer simulations. To explain what a computer simulation is and how they can be used take a look at the following video from the lawrence Livermore national Laboratory. You may not wish to watch all ...

CALP

I would like to draw your attention to a page found within the TSM that I believe to be relatively new,  Cognitive academic language proficiency (CALP). This focuses on language proficiency, specifically a conceptual framework of language proficiency as devised by Dr James Cummins1, exploring English literacy development and the social and academic barriers that limit learning for English-language learners (ELLs). Cummins introduced a distinction within language between English for social or basic survival which he referred to as Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills (BICS) and ...

ATTL and inquiry based learning

Aproaches to Teaching and Learning (ATTL or is it ATL?) represents a progressive and explicit focus from the IB on ensuring the philosophy of the organisation is delivered and experienced within the classroom. It was launched in January 2015 and it is to be hoped that you have been made aware of the plentiful resources available within the OCC Teaching via your Diploma Co-ordinator, If not, go explore. In essence, as teachers we are encouraged to ensure the deilivery of ...

International Society for Technology in Education / Kahoot

As teachers we are constantly put under pressure from the school community to remain current (or ahead of the game) when it comes to implementing technology into our classroom to deliver our biology curriculum. This brings with it many issues and one way to address these can be to establish a Professional learning network. One easy way to do this can be through the International Society for Technology in Education. To subscribe to the ISTE youtube channel go HERE. The organisation has "passionate educators, leaders and ...

The new IA – views from DP subject experts

The Group 4 IA is changing. For those teaching students in their first year of the DP, these changes will be taking effect now. As a teacher or a Head of School, do you know which methods and practices your school will be adopting? Some of OSC’s subject experts have written specific blogs on the changes and offer advice on how to approach them. Biology Chemistry. Article 1 | Article 2 Physics Design Technology