The Department of Science Education, Faculty of Education UiTM, hosted a delegation from Universitas Negeri Semarang (UNNES), Indonesia, on November 3 and 4, 2022. Prof. Dr. Woro Sumarni headed the delegation of six academics from the Physics and Chemistry Education Department of the Fakultas Matematika dan Ilmu Pengetahuan Alam. The visiting delegation was welcomed by the Dean of the Faculty of Education, Associate Professor Ts. Dr. Sharipah Ruzaina Syed Aris, the Deputy Dean of Academic, Dr. Hamimah Hashim, and lecturers from UiTM Science Education Department. The visit was also spurred on by a research initiative collaboration between UNNES entourage and several science lecturers from the Faculty of Education UiTM.
The discussion session was chaired by Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Sharipah Ruzaina Syed Aris, on November 3rd, starting with a welcome speech from the Deputy Dean of Academic. The session continued with an introduction of all members in the Science Education Department and later concluded with an amicable discussion regarding collaborative activities between UNNES and the Science Education Department, Faculty of Education, UiTM. Among the activities to be implemented are the joint organisation of an international conference or seminar on science education, student exchange, lecturers mobility effort, collaborative teaching, external reviewers, guest lectures, visiting professors, postgraduate supervision, community service projects, and collaboration in research and publication.
Mr. Mohammad Mubarrak Mohd Yusof, one of the lecturers from the Science Education Department, then led the delegation on a tour to the laboratory, a lecture room, and a microteaching room. The programme resumed in the afternoon with a guest lecture slot featuring Prof. Dr. Woro Sumarni, Department of Chemistry, UNNES, and Dr. Ellianawati, Department of Physics Education, UNNES. The purpose of having a guest lecture was to expose the science students to ethno-STEM project-based learning and its impact on critical and creative thinking skills for future teachers. One of the guest lecturers also talked about community-based science learning and its importance for future teachers to be involved in the community and ways to come up with community-based projects that can make a difference in society.
On November 4th, UNNES hosted a successful STEM forum entitled “Empowering STEM Education, Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning.” The forum welcomed 200 participants, of which the majority are the Bachelor of Science Education students. Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Sharipah Ruzaina Syed Aris, Dean of the Faculty of Education, moderated the discussion. Through the adoption of STEM, this forum aimed to assist the development of 21st century abilities such as critical thinking, creativity, cooperation, communication, and problem solving in students. During the event, a great deal of information and suggestions on how to enhance STEM education, how to establish simple STEM project-based learning, and some problems in implementing STEM education in Malaysia and Indonesia were explored.
It is intended that this visit would deepen ties between UNNES and UiTM and pave the way for further research and educational cooperation between the two institutions.