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nexus: journal of undergraduate science engineering and technology


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Dermoudy, J, Geraghty, DP, Jones, SM, Osborn, JE and Dearden, R 2005 , 'nexus: journal of undergraduate science engineering and technology', paper presented at the UniServe Conference, 28-30/9/05, Sydney.

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Available under University of Tasmania Standard License.


Graduate destination survey data from the University of Tasmania (UTas 2005a) underscore the reality that a
large proportion — at one extreme 79.4% from the Bachelor of Science in 2003 — of students undertaking
undergraduate degrees in the sciences do not enter the workforce upon graduation. Science degrees lead to further
study at Honours, Masters, and PhD level. Thus undergraduate degrees in science are a foundation for research careers
and should contain a greater proportion of research-oriented knowledge and practice than most other undergraduate
degrees. At the University of Tasmania, a project was initiated in 2004 to emphasise this reliance upon research skills in
the undergraduate curricula and to highlight the nexus that exists between teaching and research that is so critical to
scientific scholarship and student development. The project is the first such project undertaken within Australia.
This paper describes the project, which, because of its successful introduction is now an annual undertaking. The
aims of the project are to provide a model and a means of consolidating, integrating, and promoting the teachingresearch
nexus within the undergraduate science curriculum at the University of Tasmania. The project seeks to develop
a model that encourages academics to incorporate learning outcomes related to information literacy, research
methodology, and the effective communication of scientific research into their undergraduate units, and, to establish a
journal (entitled nexus) that showcases the research undertaken by our undergraduate students.
In the paper we present the methodology developed for the embedding of the journal’s requirements within the
undergraduate curricula, the novel use of mentors to aid the students in their writing, the infrastructure developed to
sustain the project into the future, and insights into pitfalls and their avoidance. We highlight the success of the project,
describe the learning outcomes engendered directly and indirectly by the project, and indicate critical factors for
ongoing success. Finally, we present preliminary results of an evaluation of the project from the three perspectives of
Editorial Committee, academic staff, and students.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Authors/Creators:Dermoudy, J and Geraghty, DP and Jones, SM and Osborn, JE and Dearden, R
Additional Information:

© 2005 Julian Dermoudy, Susan Jones, Jon Osborn, Dominic Geraghty, and Richard Dearden.

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