NMST : a science education institution

National Museum of Science and Technology has some interesting things going on in their Dhaka premises. Their activities are primarily youth oriented. Riasat Raihan pays a visit there and shares his experience with us.

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National Museum Of Science and Technology-NMST serves as Bangladesh’s only science museum and organises science education activities in both junior and high school levels. It was founded in 1965 by the Pakistani government and became a permanent establishment in 1981.

The motive of this institution is to create interest regarding science and technology among general people, especially the youths.  NMST is very active in organising numerous science fairs and displaying of many science projects. Their main target is to increase the popularity of science and technology among the general people focusing on the youths.  It also arranges different science competitions. Students from different schools and colleges around the country participate in these competitions. The participants of junior, senior and special groups participating in each of the centers in the regional level competitions; winners are selected for the central competition in Dhaka.

Due to great advancement of technology, we might not know everything about the new technologies. That is why this institution focuses on  organising presentations on different technologies to give us an idea about those. They also invite science experts to come and give lectures about the new inventions through different seminars or programs. They also have several research centers for students on different scientific things which could be very useful for science students. Not only for students, they also work for new scientists to help them or guide them. NMST assists students with science projects both financially and technologically.

Each year it selects potential projects according to national interest and socioeconomic benefit, and these projects are developed for a three-month period. Each student is given a monthly allowance and assigned a mentor who is an expert in the relevant field. In addition, a special workshop and all raw materials are provided. Assistance, cooperation and encouragement of the country’s science clubs and their interaction strengthen the science movement through coordination. To show the history of scientific and technological advancement through different exhibitions, this institute collects and preserves ancient and modern evidence of science and technology here.

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NMST’s contribution can be divided into 3 general ways: gallery display, educational activities and publications.

Museum galleries are physical science galleries, funny science galleries, biological galleries, information technology galleries, art technology galleries and aerospace gallery. Apart from this, outdoor exhibitions include science park, dinosaurs, surya clock, exhibition of old aircraft can be traced in their premises.

In terms of educational activities, the National Science and Technology Museum is an informal science educational institution. Here, popular lectures are organised regularly on science and technology. All these programs are attended by school-college, university students, members of science club, prominent scientists, technology scholarship, dignitaries and a large number of audiences who take active interest in science. The prominent scientists, technologists and science teachers of the country have made important speeches on the topic as expert speakers in the programs. In addition to its permanent exhibitions, the museum also puts on popular science lectures, scientific film shows and a childrens’ science festival.

Posters and leaflets are published in the latest science papers, the popular science lecture series, the Annual Report of the National Science and Technology Week and in the annual programme log.

One of the interesting things of NMST is the museum bus. It goes from place to place. It’s like a floating museum. Currently there is only one bus. To make it more regular all over the country, they are planning to release 3 more buses for the attraction of the youths all over the country.
NMST has around 4000 visitors per month. The visitors range from the vice chancellor of DU to general public. Many foreigners also come to see the progress and showed their interests. The science park here is very attractive. From an old war plane to different scientific elements are there for the visitors. Children can enjoy their times here as well and get introduced with science and technology.

One of the remarkable works of NMST in 2015-2016 was Interactive Smart Floor. It is situated in the information technology gallery. Its specialty is that you can play any game, for example football or cricket which will feel virtually real.

The future plan of NMST is to establish world-class science museum, collect more resources, setting up a branch of National Science and Technology Museum in divisions other than Dhaka, building science and technology buildings. Initiatives like this can provide guidance and help in order to establish our youths dreams and NMST is doing exactly that.




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