Queensland's Citizen Science Hub

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Funding for the Queensland STEM Education Network expired at the end of March 2018. At this time the website remains alive, with a number of valuable resources including posters and a glossary of terms. QSEN is (or has been) a consortium of Queensland universities providing a range of high quality programs and initiatives designed to build STEM capacity across the State. A statement of objectives and outcomes has been furnished by former Coordinator and Member of the Society Kay Lembo (syllabus AT royalsocietyqld.org.au).

The Queensland Department of Education and the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) are keen to increase the broaden the range of materials available to teachers relevant to the new senior science syllabuses. The QCAA encourages authors and others who generate material to grant access to their work using Creative Commons attribution. A briefing note and a powerpoint presentation by the QCAA explaining Creative Commons and Open Educational Resources are re-published here, licensed under Creative Commons CC BY 4.0.

Arising from a brainstorming session held in July 2015, the Royal Society advocated for the development of a web portal to offer access to a range of authoritative materials and programs in science education in Queensland. This portal was to be differentiated from a plain Internet search engine or the national educators’ site Scootle in that the materials would be arranged within a coherent pedagogical framework and checked for consistency with the national curriculum. Development was subsequently transferred to the Office of the Chief Scientist of Australia. The STAR portal went live late in June 2017.

Primary Industries Education Foundation Australia is a not for profit company that operates and manages a web portal called Primezone. Primezone provides teachers, parents and students, with an Australian Curriculum-driven range of high-quality, vetted educational resources relevant to primary industries, from Foundation to Year 12. Visit Primezone at www.primezone.edu.au

This Bird of the Month is presented by Dr. William Feeney, a research fellow at the University of Queensland. The interactions between cuckoos and their hosts form part of Will’s current research.

The Fan-tailed Cuckoo (Cacomantis flabelliformis) is one of Australia’s ten brood parasitic cuckoos (eleven if you include the Oriental Cuckoo [Cuculus optatus]; though, this species does not breed in Australia) and is common throughout Queensland’s woodlands. It visually resembles the closely-related Brush (C. variolosus) and Chestnut-breasted (C. castaneiventris) Cuckoos, and can be distinguished from the Brush Cuckoo through the presence of its conspicuous yellow eye ring, and from the Chestnut-breasted Cuckoo through its noticeably duller breast colouration. The Chestnut-breasted Cuckoo is also restricted in its distribution to northern Queensland. While over 70 songbird species have been recorded to be parasitised by the Fan-tailed Cuckoo, 17 species are recognised as biological hosts but the majority of parasitism records are from the White-browed Scrubwren (Sericornis frontalis) as well as the Brown (Acanthiza pusilla) and Inland (A. apicalis) Thornbills Continue reading

The Queensland Science Network was launched by His Excellency the Governor of Queensland the Honourable Paul de Jersey AC at an official reception at Government House on 13 June 2019. Some 50 guests representing the societies who have joined the Network and some senior public servants including the CEO of the Queensland Museum and the Queensland Chief Scientist attended. Continue reading

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