by Benjamin Freeland
by Mari Sasano
The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) tests 15 year-olds from 65 countries on mathematics, reading, and science. Administered every 3 years, the 2009 results echo the scores that Canada has received in the past. On each of those three scales, Canada appears near the top. However, Alberta students often better their counterparts nationally, and appear to be giving some of the highest performers- China (Hong Kong, Shanghai), Japan, Finland, Korea, Singapore- a run for their money, particularly in science.
Recently, Maclean's magazine announced the winners of the prestigious 3M National Teaching Fellowship. Included on the 2012 list was the Faculty of Education’s own Toni Samek (PhD), who teaches in the School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS).
This comes on the heels of news that the University of Alberta is home to 4 out of 10 of this year's 3M National Teaching Fellowship winners.
The excitement has been felt throughout the university.
Dan Vandermeulen, '68 BEd, '89 MEd, recently stepped into the role of Deputy Minister of Executive and Secretary to Cabinet with the Government of Nunavut. Dan, formerly President of Northern Lakes College (1987-2005) and President of Nunavut Artic College (since 2007) has many years experience serving the town of High Prairie as a Councilor. He also served as Chair of the High Prairie School Division Board of Trustees. With his background as an educator, administrator and superintendent Dan continues to share his expertise with the community.
A Global Citizenship Experience in Africa led Louis Williams to a teaching position at a First Nations reserve
One hot afternoon, Louis Williams lay down in a field to gaze at a Ghana sky, but was soon interrupted by worried students - and a cold splash of water. "The kids were asking, 'Are you sick?' while pouring water over me to make sure I was okay," he says.
A decade ago laptops, iPhones, and Smart Boards in the classroom might have seemed like science fiction. But technology has migrated from the isolated applications of scientists and engineers into the sphere of education.
First came computer labs and the internet. Now, students bring personal devices and communicate wirelessly. This phenomenon has transformed the face of learning in Alberta classrooms and around the world.