I learned yesterday that my graduate university, the University of Oregon, has a Science Literacy Program led by an old friend, Judith Eisen. It looks like an excellent idea.
The University of Oregon Science Literacy Program (UO SLP) offers General Education courses for non-science majors designed to improve scientific awareness and general science literacy of the educated public by enhancing competence in and appreciation of science. The SLP will empower undergraduates to consider scientific approaches to societal issues, enable graduate students in the sciences to effectively communicate ideas to audiences of non-scientists, and assist faculty in improving teaching techniques using modern pedagogy.
Awesome. More universities ought to do that. I know my own university has a dearth of non-major science courses that offer that kind of breadth and context — it’s one of those problems we could solve so easily if only the administration would let us hire a few dozen more faculty.