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ID4001   Communication and Teaching in Science

Academic year(s): 2019-2020

Key information

SCOTCAT credits : 15

ECTS credits : 7

Level : SCQF Level 10

Semester: 1

Availability restrictions: Available only to Senior Honours students (Integrated Masters students may take in Senior Honours or their final year) who have been accepted following application and interview in the preceding semester.

Planned timetable: Flexible

This module is based on the Undergraduate Ambassador Scheme launched in 2002. It provides final year students within the Faculty of Science with the opportunity to gain first hand experience of science education through a mentoring scheme with science teachers in local schools. Students will act initially as observers in the classroom and later as classroom assistants. With permission of the teacher-in-charge, students may also be given the opportunity to lead at least one lesson, or activity within a lesson, during their placement. This module will enable students to gain substantial experience of working in a challenging and unpredictable working environment, and of communicating scientific ideas at various different levels; and to gain a broad understanding of many of the key aspects of teaching science in schools. While of particular value to students aiming for a career in education, these core skills are equally important for any career that requires good communication. Entry to this module is by selection following application and interview during the preceding semester.

Learning and teaching methods and delivery

Weekly contact: Occasional tutorials and a half-day training session. 25 hours contact time in the placement school over the semester.

Scheduled learning hours: 39

Guided independent study hours: 111

Assessment pattern

As used by St Andrews: Coursework = 100% comprising: Written report on the placement (35%) Teacher's assessment of student's placement (25%) Oral presentation (30%) Project proposal (10%)

As defined by QAA
Written examinations : 0%
Practical examinations : 70%
Coursework: 30%

Re-assessment: No Re-assessment available


Module teaching staff: Dr A Naughton, Dr C Rose, Dr B Chalmers, Dr T Gloster, Dr R Letham, Dr M Campbell, Dr B Sinclair, and visiting speakers (TBC)

Additional information from school

Aims & Objectives

The aim is to allow students to experience classroom teaching, for them to learn from this experience through reflection, discussion, and practice, and to contribute to the learning of others.


Learning Outcomes

Students will have opportunities to enhance their skills in


  • Public speaking and communication
  • Organisational and interpersonal skills
  • Time management skills
  • Team-working skills
  • Working in a challenging and unpredictable environment
  • Professional conduct
  • Addressing the needs of individuals
  • The ability to improvise
  • Giving (and receiving) feedback
  • Handling difficult and potentially disruptive situations
  • Experience of teaching methods



The following form the components of the module


  • Undergoing an Enhanced Disclosure (PVG) check prior to entering the classroom; you will not be permitted to begin the module without this
  • Being paired with a specific teacher mentor at your host school who will work with you to identify your aims and objectives for the term, and support your work in the host school
  • Attendance at an induction session in Orientation Week giving you an introduction to the fundamentals of working with children and conduct in the school environment
  • Attending presentations/discussions with outside speakers with experience of the modern classroom.
  • Spending 25 hours of pupil contact time in the host school, developing your role within the classroom
  • Design and completion of a Special Project
  • A series of tutorials with your departmental representative at the University
  • Completion of four summatively assessed elements - special project proposal, end of module report, teacher’s assessment and assessed talk



Additional information on continuous assessment etc

Please see the module handbook online at


Recommended Books

Please view University online record:


General information

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