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"Estudos Avançados" #94 addresses the teaching of sciences

by Richard Meckien - published Dec 04, 2018 10:55 AM - - last modified Jan 24, 2019 03:56 PM
Rights: Original version in Portuguese by Mauro Bellesa.

Capa da revista 'Estudos Avançados' 94The teaching of natural sciences, mathematics and engineering is the subject of the main dossier of the latest issue of IEA's journal "Estudos Avançados," already available in printed and digital versions (Portuguese only).

The set of articles retakes the journal's project to deepen the knowledge about primary and secondary education when it comes to humanities (theme of the previous issue), and to natural sciences and mathematics. According to editor Alfredo Bosi, "the complexity of the questions about what and how to teach is evident" when examining the published texts.

The dossier has 21 articles and the participation of 44 researchers. 15 texts are subdivided into shorter dossiers on chemistry, geology, mathematics, biology and physics, respectively elaborated with the collaboration of USP professors Hernan Chaimovich, Umberto Cordani, Flavio Ulhoa Coelho, Marcos Buckeridge and Yvonne Mascarenhas. There is also an article on engineering and five on general issues relating to high school.

Further covered topics are the role given to the natural sciences in the versions of the National Curricular Common Core, the teaching through a historical-investigative approach, the end of the positivist model in the history of the sciences, the use of mobile devices in learning and high school as a closure of education in crisis.

Three articles compose the dossier on the teaching of physics. The teaching and learning of the discipline in high school are analyzed as well as the training of its teachers, including continuing education, which still has "no adequate and effective procedures," according to the authors. The set is completed by a critical analysis of the current reality of teaching physics: "in crisis, outdated, minimized, devalued," according to the author.

Concerning biology, the dossier contains an article on the potential of research teaching in order to make it more meaningful for students. Therefore, the authors articulate aspects of the constructivist consensus with the axes of scientific literacy. The other article about the discipline addresses the peculiarities of teaching botany and the importance of contextualization for good quality teaching.

The principles for a chemistry curriculum as it has been approached in the last 38 editions of the FUVEST exams, one of the most competitive processes to select higher education students in the country, and how the training of its teachers takes place in Brazil and worldwide are the subjects of the dossier on the discipline.

The teaching of geosciences in the university and the importance of expanding the area in the training and qualification courses for basic education teachers are discussed in two articles.

In relation to mathematics, the articles discuss the teaching of the discipline in the early years of learning, teacher training, curriculum materials, correlations of the history of algebra and algebraic thinking with teaching and, in a complementary way, how ethnomathematics can contribute to social justice and sustainability.

The text on engineering presents the engineering of complexity as a proposal to approach the area whether in its conception work of its operation, considering the assumptions of the complex thinking elaborated by French thinker Edgar Morin.


Issue #94 also brings four other texts which in some way complement the previous issue's dossier "The Teaching of Humanities". Two of them are dedicated to theoretical thinking and to Peruvian sociologist Aníbal Quijano, a former visiting professor at the IEA who died in May 2018 at the age of 90.

Historian Carlos Guilherme Mota, first director of the IEA, reports the motivations for him and Adriana Lopez to write the book "History of Brazil. An Interpretation," launched in 2008 and already in its fifth edition.

The set also has a text on traditional indigenous knowledge by Gonzalo Aguillar Cavallo regarding the preservation of nature and environmental patrimony.


The issue is dedicated to nuclear physicist Ernst Hamburger (1933-2018), "indefatigable diffuser of history and sciences inside and outside USP," according to Bosi. Hamburger was one of the creators of the Laboratory of Demonstrations at USP's Institute of Physics (IF) and director of the Estação Ciência (Science Station), a project of the Dean for Culture and University Extension which is currently under reformulation.

The list below contains the names of the authors who have contributed with each one of the addressed themes:

Leading Article

Alfredo Bosi

The Teaching of Sciences

Suzana Ursi, Pércia Paiva Barbosa, Paulo Takeo Sano and Flávio Augusto de Souza Berchez
Daniela Lopes Scarpa and Natália Ferreira Campos
Anna Maria Pessoa de Carvalho and Lúcia Helena Sasseron
Jesuína Lopes de Almeida Pacca and Alberto Villani
Marco Antonio Moreira
Marcelo Almeida Bairral
Renata F. M. Batista and Cibelle Cellestino
Luis Carlos de Menezes
Cármen Lúcia Brancaglion and Adair Mendes Nacarato
Jonei Cerqueira Barbosa and Andréia Maria Pereira de Oliveira
Yuly Vanegas and Joaquín Giménez
Flávio Ulhoa Coelho and Marcia Aguiar
Ubiratan D'Ambrósio
Carmen Fernandez
Flavio Antonio Maximiano
Paulo Alves Porto
Maria Eunice Ribeiro Marcondes
Astolfo Gomes de Mello Araujo
Umberto G. Cordani, Marcia Ernesto, Maria Assunção F. da Silva Dias, Elisabete de Santis B. G. Saraiva, Fernando F. de Alkmim, Carlos Alberto Mendonça and Rachel Albrecht
Marcia Ernesto, Umberto G. Cordani, Celso Dal Ré Carneiro, Maria Assunção F. da Silva Dias, Carlos Alberto Mendonça and Elisabete de Santis Braga
Gildo Magalhães
José Roberto Castilho Piqueira


Gonzalo Aguilar Cavallo
Deni Alfaro Rubbo
Enrique Amayo Zevallos
Carlos Guilherme Mota