This volume contains a readable, condensed, and interpretive account of discussions among physicists from 26 countries from the Conference on Physics in General Education held in Rio de Janeiro in July, 1963. The meeting dealt with physics as part of a liberal education. The serious practical difficulties of teaching physics in a way that is appropriate to this purpose are now widely recognized in those countries that are highly developed scientifically, and many projects have been launched to solve them. Reports on some of these projects were given at the Conference, and still others are referred to in the book. In the comparatively underdeveloped countries, on the other hand, it is still necessary to establish the importance of including physics and other sciences in the curriculum. The book will be useful to all those who are concerned with science education. It will prove particularly useful to science educators working in Latin America, Africa, and Asia.
This was the second conference on education to be organized under the auspices of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics (IUPAP), in association with a number of other national and international organizations. The Conference material was reduced to about one-third of its volume, rearranged, and in instances largely rewritten, so as to present the essence of the formal addresses and discussions in as useful and readable form as possible.