Ontario - The Science and Technology Awareness Network

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Dec 5, 2012 (4 years and 8 months ago)

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THE ONTARIO CLIMATE FOR
SCIENCE AND INNOVATION

THE ONTARIO MINISTRY OF
RESEARCH AND INNOVATION

1. TRENDS IN THE ONTARIO ECONOMY


General Economy and Workforce


Global leaders in areas such as
automotive, plastics, aerospace,
information and telecommunications technology and the life
sciences.









Northwestern

Ontario:

2% of total workforce

18% of forestry

employment

Greater Toronto Area:

46% of total workforce

68% of finance employment

Northeastern Ontario:

4% of total workforce

60% of mining employment

Eastern Ontario:

13% of total workforce

35% of computers and
electronics manufacturing
employment

Southwestern

Ontario:

12% of total workforce

27% of transportation equipment
employment (six of world’s


largest automakers)

Central Ontario:

23% of total workforce

28% of
manufacturing
employment

Source: Statistics Canada, Labour Force Survey, 2008

1. TRENDS IN THE ONTARIO ECONOMY


General Economy and Workforce



Ontario economy has been hard hit by the global recession and financial
crisis.


Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) identify a
number of new and emerging industry sectors in the economy including:


aerospace


biotechnology in: agriculture; forestry; fishing; pharmaceuticals


environment


gaming and multimedia


telehealth and tele
-
learning


Ontario Job Futures to provide a more accurate update of labour market in
November 2009



As skill needs continue to increase, learning now does not cease after
leaving school but continues during a person's whole career.


The notion of
lifelong learning

as an integral part of one's life is gaining
momentum.


A relatively recent development, especially evident in new and evolving
"high
-
tech" jobs, is the fusion of training, education and skills.


Employers today look for a broader set of skills






Sources: http://www.hrsdc.gc.ca/eng/hip/hrp/sp/sp_index.shtml

http://www.ontariojobfutures.ca/

1. TRENDS IN THE ONTARIO ECONOMY


Ontario Innovation Agenda


Provides government
-
wide direction to support innovation as a key
driver of Ontario’s prosperity


Represents a shift in focus for government’s role and leadership on
the economy and a new, broad and inclusive view of innovation


Support excellence


Focused investment to key priority areas


Tackling climate change (bio
-
based, environmental, alternative energy, clean
technologies)


Digital media, innovation and communication technologies


Conquering disease (life sciences, biotechnology, advanced health
technologies, pharmaceutical research)


Promote an innovation
-
friendly business climate


Ensure government is a catalyst for innovation


Skills and knowledge (building, attracting and retaining talent)

Source: www.mri.gov.on.ca

2. POLICIES IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Ministry of Education



Revised Curriculum:


Science and Technology Grades 1
-
8 (implemented in 2008)


Science Grades 9
-
12 (implemented in September 2009)


Purpose: to develop scientifically (and technologically)
literate citizens


Inclusion of fundamental concepts and big ideas instead of just
facts.


Focus on investigation skills: students “do” science vs. just
reading about it.


Imbedding of literacy and mathematical literacy skills throughout
all strands.


Current curriculum
-

Questions; investigation and problem
solving; previously it was solely on knowledge


Boards should be training their teachers on the new curriculum





Source: www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/document/curricul/curricul.html

2. POLICIES IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities


Ontario is taking steps to establish the Ontario College of
Trades
-

a regulatory college that would help modernize
the province's apprenticeship and skilled trades system.


Construction, industrial/manufacturing, motive power and
service sectors.


The College would encourage more people to work in the
trades and help the system better serve employers, skilled
trades
-
people, apprentices and consumers.




More than 150 apprenticeable trades in Ontario cover the
construction, industrial/manufacturing, motive power and service
sectors.


Approximately 120,000 Ontario apprentices are currently learning a
trade.







Source: www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/tcu/collegeoftrades/

Ministry of Culture



Ontario Science Centre


In April 2009, OSC received one
-
time funding of
$1.08M and an annual operating increase of $1.6M


Science North


In April 2009, Science North received one
-
time
funding of $340K and an annual operating increase of
$3.6M

2. POLICIES IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Source: www.fin.gov.on.ca/en/budget/ontariobudgets/

2. POLICIES IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Ministry of Research and Innovation



Youth Science and Technology Outreach Program (YSTOP)


Teachers’ Science and Technology Outreach Program (TSTOP)


ORF (Research Excellence and GL2) and ERA
applicants are
required to undertake annual youth outreach activities and may
use up to 1% of Ontario’s funding during the term of the award.


Sponsorship grants in support of the OIA (conferences,
workshops, lectures, seminars and other special events)


2008 Ontario Budget commitment of $5M to Let’s Talk Science
and Youth Science Foundation Canada

Source: http://www.mri.gov.on.ca/

3. EDUCATION (RESEARCH)

Literature


Gender, Culture and Mathematics Performance
(PNAS
June 2, 2009)


International study including Canada


Results:


U.S. girls have reached parity with boys in math performance at
all grade levels


More males than females score above the 95
th

or 99
th

percentile
(highly talented)


Variability between girls and boys in math performance is not
attributed to innate biological differences but rather is an artefact
of changeable socio
-
cultural factors:


Stereotypes, proper education on career choices (guidance
counsellors) and female role models in math
-
intensive careers


International Math Olympiad: Canada ranks 19 out of 30
countries competing


Source: http://www.pnas.org/content/106/22/8801.abstract

3. EDUCATION (RESEARCH)

Literature


Learning Science in Informal Environments: People, Places and
Pursuits.
January 14, 2009.

(Committee on Learning Science in Informal
Environments, National Research Council of the National Academies)


Committee established to:


examine the potential of non
-
school settings for science learning and assess
the evidence of science learning across settings, learner age groups and
time spans.


Conducted a broad review of the literatures that inform learning science
in informal environments


Recommendations for organizing, designing and supporting science
learning:


Informal environments should be developed through community
-
educator partnerships and be rooted in scientific problems and ideas
that are consequential for community members


Learn with and about groups you want to serve and relate science to
their everyday life


Experiences should be multifaceted and interactive and developed in
light of learning goals


Assessment should be on cognitive and intellectual, attitudinal,
behavioural, sociocultural and participatory capabilities





Source: http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=12190

3. EDUCATION (RESEARCH)

Literature


Learning Science in Informal Environments: People, Places and
Pursuits.



Assessment


Field struggles with aspects of measuring informal learning;
must accept this

»
Diversity of informal learning environments/experiences


There are not good outcome measures for assessing the
science learning goals of informal settings


Long
-
term and cumulative progressions are much more
challenging to document; effective life
-
long learning is a
cumulative process that incorporates a variety of media and
settings.


More feasible to look at the immediate choices that lead toward
a potential science career (school courses, after
-
school
activities, reading material, games, hobbies, etc)


Early elementary experiences (pre
-
grade 8 may be of
importance






CONCLUSION


With a shifting global environment and economy,
we need to keep up and adapt to these
changes:


Traditional vs. emerging sectors (locally and globally)


Venues and methods of educating and engaging
youth/adults/public in innovation activities


Partnerships to build capacity


Learning from research and evaluation