Navigating the changing landscape of formal and informal science learning opportunities

Deborah Corrigan, Cathy Buntting, Alister Jones, John Loughran

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Otherpeer-review


A Google Scholar search of outreach, informal, non-formal, and out-of-school science education highlights a prolific and rich area fo experiences offered by education institutions (e.g., universities), educational centres (e.g., zoos, museums), libraries, the broadcast media, workplaces and other community-based organisations to enhance individual understandings of science (Falk JH, Dierking, LD, Museum experiences revisited. Left Coast Press, Walnut Creek, 2012).
This book takes a brand and deep view of research involving learning opportunities that are afforded to learners of science when the focus is on linking the formal and informal science education sectors. We use the metaphor of a 'landscape' to emphasise the possible movement and interactions within a landscape that is inclusive of formal, informal and free-choice learning opportunities (rather than the not un uncommon formal sector assumption that the informal sector should somehow serve the formal, and that free-choice is not part of education at all). This book explores opportunities to change formal school science education by considering some perspectives and achievements from the informal and free-choice education sector within the wider lifelong, life-wide education landscape. Additionally it explores how science learning that occurs in a more inclusive landscape can demonstrate the potential power of these opportunities to address issues of relevance and engagement that currently plague the learning of science in school settings.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNavigating the Changing Landscape of Formal and Informal Science Learning Opportunities
EditorsDeborah Corrigan, Cathy Buntting, Alister Jones, John Loughran
Place of PublicationCham Switzerland
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9783319897615
ISBN (Print)9783319897608
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2018


  • Formal and informal education
  • science education
  • science leanring

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