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RCSI Committed to Education Excellence
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Debating Science Issues (DSI)
DSI is cross border debating competition which invites young people to engage in debate
on the cultural, societal and ethical implications of advances in biomedical science.
The competition provides a great opportunity for students to expand their research,
communication and scientific skills. Through preliminary debates about stem cell research,
nanotechnology, immunology practices, self-diagnostic tests, rare disease research funding,
and genetically modified foods, the field narrowed to the four schools represented at the
Finals at RCSI on February 22nd.
The workshop series and debating competition is collaboration between nine science
research and discovery centres throughout Ireland. After several closely contested debates,
Banbridge Academy, Co Down emerged victorious to become the 2013 Debating Science
Issues winners.
All schools have an opportunity to participate in a three hour workshop on one of the
biomedical science topics before the debating competition begins. REACH RCSI's Clíona
Lyes visited the four local DEIS schools mentored by RCSI to facilitate a workshop on
vaccinations in preparation for the Round 1 debate. The programme is managed within
RCSI by Dr Maria Morgan and by Maria Kelly, REACH RCSI Programme.
Primary Science for Teachers Initiative
Primary school teachers from around Ireland participated in the `Come to Your Senses'
summer course which took place in July 2012. The Primary Science for Teachers Initiative
is a component of the REACH RCSI programme. The course uses the theme of the
human senses to enable primary school teachers to develop their interest and enthusiasm
for teaching science with direct relevance to the primary science curriculum for Social
Environmental and Science Education (SESE).
Promoting Science, Medicine and Research
Programmes to promote interest in research, medicine and science were run throughout the
year, attracting young and older people alike by making science fun, exciting and accessible.
The hugely popular RCSI MiniMed School Open Lecture Series, presented by leading health
professionals and academics from RCSI, provided an informative and entertaining series of
free public lectures. The lectures took place monthly from October 2012 to March 2013,
with two lectures taking place at each session on a range of healthcare topics including the
ageing eye, healthy skin, cyberchondria, exercise, gut health and colon cancer.
130 Transition Year students from 120 schools across Ireland attended the week-long TY
MiniMed Programme held in RCSI and Beaumont Hospital which provided an opportunity
to experience what it is like to train and work as a doctor. Transition Year students from
the South East took part in the Waterford RCSI TY MiniMed Programme at the HSE-RCSI
Education Centre at Waterford Regional Hospital and at Waterford Institute of Technology.
"The competition provided a
great opportunity for students
to expand their communication
and scientific skills. The fact
that the students can link it to
everyday societal changes gives
it an edge:" ­ Debating Science
Issues teacher.
Meabh examines the crime scene at the RCSI
Cracking Crime with Science workshop.