Improving science outcomes for students in the Pacific

Education & Skills Training
Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Samoa, and Cook Islands

Professional development for teachers delivered by smartphone, and science content relevant to Pacific students.

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Purpose

To improve science learning outcomes for students and professional development opportunities for teachers

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Approach

Co-designed learning content delivered via a custom elearning platform - designed for scaling across the region

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Highlights

Engaging science content relevant to the Pacific Islands

Delivers interactive online teacher professional development

Enables flexible offline learning

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Partners

Governments of Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Samoa and Cook Islands, USP, Nanogirl Labs, Te Pūkenga (formerly Wintec), and supported by MFAT

Bringing together regional, national & local education priorities

The Pacific eLearning Program is aligned with national and Pacific education priorities to increase young people's use of scientific knowledge, enabling greater social, cultural and economic participation.

The program aims to improve the science learning for year 10 students in Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Samoa and Cook Islands, which is currently taught by mostly non-specialist teachers with limited access to teaching and learning resources.

Designed in close collaboration with participating governments, we are delivering an elearning and professional development program that meets the context-specific requirements of the Pacific. The design will focus on scalability of elearning across the region and long term sustainability with streamlined handover to government.

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The technology is designed for the specific needs of the user communities. This means courses can be accessed offline with accessible devices. They use local terminology and have simple interfaces for people with low levels of digital literacy.
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Creating a relevant science curriculum (that’s fun too!)

Building on the knowledge gained from reviewing each country's science curriculum, the program team are designing the science content using a human-centred design approach, which involves teacher and student input throughout the entire process.

‘Pacific Science Fellows’ from each of the four participating nations bring experience in their respective education system, and are working closely on content development to ensure science concepts are deeply relevant to students' daily lives, and are inclusive of local indigenous knowledge and culture. The goal is to design content that is engaging, interactive and fun.

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Courses can be accessed offline, making the program easily scalable to rural areas with limited internet connectivity.

Supporting teachers through tailored professional development

In addition to student learning, the program will deliver micro-learning courses for teachers to continue their professional development.

A second modality for teacher learning will include job embedded professional development (JEPD) activities that provide teachers with easy, time efficient avenues to continue their own learning and development as part of the school day.

The Pacific eLearning Programme is powered by Bero, Catalpa's specialised mobile learning platform.

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