M. Sc Environmental Science
Diploma of Teaching and Learning (Sec)
PhD Project Title
'Steps Towards Curriculum Coherence - the teaching and learning of consilience'
Professor Lindsey Conner
Dr Veronica O’Toole
Expected Completion of PhD
I have a background in botany and zoology but an interest in literature, visual arts and the environment. In 1997, I completed an M.Sc in Environmental Science where I developed a concept plan for the ecological restoration of Otamahua/Quail Island in Lyttelton Harbour. I was specifically interested the notion of novel ecosystems where indigenous and exotic species interact to form viable and functioning ecosystems. This led to interest in the intertwining of culture and Nature. In 1999, I moved into education and taught English with the National Polytechnic in Grenoble (INPG), France. Here I developed an English teaching module called ‘Nature, Art and Language’ based on E.O.Wilson’s work, Consilience: the unity of knowledge. The course explored the connections between the sciences and the arts, and gave French students of physics, maths, engineering and architecture the chance to study topics ranging from Hamlet, Vermeer, and Artistic Creativity to Gaia through ESL. My work led to the development of courses that focused on the exploration of ethics and science. I also sought through this study to fulfil the 1974 UNESCO recommendations for International Education. This led to the introduction of the ‘Soliya Connect Programme’ into the National School of Applied Mathematics in Grenoble (ENSIMAG) in 2008/9. ‘Soliya’ is a UN affiliated NGO that seeks via social media to create dialogue between students in the West with those in the Middle East.
I am interested in realising the New Zealand Curriculum’s ‘Principle of Coherence’ through the teaching and learning of consilience. I am exploring the impact of one such course in a senior French class. Results suggest that coherence could be best attained via separate specialised entities which promote the teaching of philosophy and evolutionary psychology.
Genet, R., Papp, V. & Conner, L (in prep). NCEA ‘interact’ standard design considerations for French.
Genet, R. (2010). Case Study: Soliya Connect Programme at ENSIMAG, France, in Helm, F and Guth, E (eds) Telecollaboration 2.0 for Language and Intercultural Learning. Peter Lang Publishing Group, Bern, Switzerland.
Grison, L., Genet, R. & Mitchell, C (2007). ‘De l’utilité de l’enseignement des sciences humaines en cours d’anglais’ (‘The Applications of Teaching the Humanities during ESL Classes’.) ‘Les Langues au cœur de la tranversalité - 35e Congrès UPLEGESS’(Languages at the heart of Transversality, 35th Conference of the Union of Language Teachers of the Leading French Engineering Schools) Grenoble, France.
Genet, R. & Burrows, C. (1999). ‘The ecological restoration of Otamahua/Quail Island 1. The island’s physical setting, history, and planning for ecological restoration.’ New Zealand Natural Sciences, 24:113-125.
Genet. R. & Burrows, C. (1998). A Vision for the Ecological Restoration of Quail Island, Rebus Publications, Christchurch.
Genet, R. ‘Defiance or Foresight: Why Was Deans Bush Preserved?’ Feature article. The Press, Christchurch, 17/02/98.