Immanuel Kant said “Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.” The North-West University’s motive and long-term goals are to provide knowledge by teaching and promoting science and technology through engagement with schools and the public. This mission helps to develop, encourage, nurture and support innovation talents in science, technology and engineering.
What is the Science Centre?
The Science Centre is an educational institution that supports schools, teachers and – most important – learners who are studying mathematics, science and technology. This centre caters for various people who are interested in pursuing a career in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). It also promotes knowledge through different activities such as:
- National Science Week: This initiative by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) is a countrywide celebration of science, involving various stakeholders and role players who conduct science-based activities.
- Career guidance: Learners are given insight into national and international careers in science.
- Science festivals: Career festivals that celebrate, educate and entertain learners, young people, the general public and leaders in society.
- Educator workshops: These workshops offer support to educators and offer new and exciting alternatives to teaching the curriculum content.
- Learner workshops: These are extra-curricular sessions that supplement the curriculum and provide enriched content and career guidance.
- Science entertainment: The team at the centre presents educational and entertaining science shows.
- Public engagement: Public lectures by scientists enlighten the public on science topics and current developments in their fields of expertise.
- Astro-Quiz Competition: This is a national astronomy-based competition aimed at Grade 7 learners and relates to their curriculum. The project aims to improve teaching and learning of basic astronomy in primary schools.
- Outreach programmes: These programmes are aimed at making our facilities and expertise accessible to learners in outlying areas without access to laboratories and scientific equipment.
- General science awareness: The centre aims to contribute to public awareness of, interest in, understanding of and insight into lesser-known scientific fields, innovations and areas of research.
Science centres have been shown to:
- Improve performance in science and mathematics in higher and lower grades at school.
- Encourage learners to follow higher-grade studies so that they can study science, engineering and technology at university.
- Ensure that more learners follow careers in science and technology.
- Increase the interest in science and technology in non-scientific communities.
- Encourage young people to take up hobbies and read books relating to science and technology.
School groups are required to make an appointment before visiting the Science Centre. Booking is not necessary for individuals.