David Platz is the Head of School for the Online College of Advanced STEM (OCAS) and The School of Astronomy & Astrophysics (TSAA). Since 2005, a unique and long-standing collaborative partnership has existed between OCAS and USQ to help alleviate the problem of under-achievement in gifted students at high school. Through extensive consultation with academic staff, syllabi and full-year advanced STEM courses for high capability high school students have been established.
Senior Astronomy and Senior Astrophysics were the first two advanced courses trialled in the classroom from 2007 to 2009. In 2010, these transitioned to online delivery as accredited independent self-paced high school studies. Each year since 2012, students have been offered significant scholarships as a direct consequence of studying and conducting research in Astronomy & Astrophysics through TSAA.
In 2015, USQ partnered with TSAA in a $500 000 Collaboration & Innovation Fund grant to broaden the offering of advanced STEM curriculum to high capability high school students. USQ lecturers have facilitated the instruction of course materials in two additional full-year courses; Data Science Applications using R and Senior Coding. OCAS courses remain the only accredited Advanced School-based Studies offered to high school students in Queensland.
Developing a 21st century online learning solution for all Australian regional, rural and remote students and teachers that equals the education service provision provided to those in cities.
- Astronomy Education being used as a vehicle for extending knowledge in high-school students
- History of Astronomy in Australia