Given its name, Integrated Science General Education (ISGE), the primary achievement and purpose of this curriculum is the act of “Synthesis” or “Integration” or “Unification.” We here devote several individual pages to each of the specific strategies or tactics designed to achieve this synthesis, integration and unification (which we often abbreviate as SIU).
ISGE uses multiple mechanisms in its overall curriculum to deliver SIU to the students, including skill-training in developing their own skills at scientific discovery and data SIU. We advocate the use of multiple ways to achieve this SIU to widen the possibilities and to ensure that it is actually delivered.
In the course of human events, and especially in the course of scientific or medical history, SIU events are among the most rare and most significant. Training our next generation of scientists and the general population in SIU tools and techniques is a laudable goal in itself.
In our review of the history of conventional science, the watersheds or key events in that sequence that are most laudatory were the instances where great integrations or unifications occurred. Among the most celebrated of the scientists, a term that did not describe them until the 19th Century, are those who achieved a synthesis of much of the work that had occurred before them. Consider some of the examples:
- unified laws of gravitation
- periodic table
- theory of relativity
- continental drift theory
- unification of electromagneticism
- theory of evolution
If this is so, then the trio of achievements, SIU (synthesis, integration, unification) are powerful and teaching our science students about them is central and essential.