STEM is the acronym for science, technology, engineering, and math. STEM education is gaining popularity because of the rapid advancement in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics field. Although it offers much better career prospects compared with other field of studies, in many educational institutions STEM education is still imparted through outmoded methods and techniques.
Technical schools and educational institutions need to understand that the STEM education lays a strong foundation for students to pursue higher studies in the field of studies relating to science, technology, engineering, and math and get good employment opportunities.
Therefore, educational institutions need to improve STEM education by the following ways:
1. Increasing focus on problem-solving and not on memorization: Educational institutions are giving too much importance on memorization, rote learning and not adequate focus on problem solving. STEM is a subject that requires higher problem solving abilities and not memorization and rote learning skills. Educational institutions need to come up with innovative teaching methods, techniques, and tools to impart STEM education. STEM education is best imparted by enabling students to solve real problems and learn by doing.
2. Conducting science research projects: Schools need to conduct more and more science research projects in regular intervals and encourage younger students to participate in it. Science research projects provide students with opportunity to learn their subjects first hand and know how things actually work. Science research projects enable students to learn by doing, which far more effective than rote learning. Education must not be limited to just textbook or classrooms, rather it should lay more thrust on practical knowledge. Schools must upgrade their curriculum and teaching methodologies to enable students to get more practical knowledge.
3. Encouraging greater peer-to-peer learning and discussions: Students share a certain comfort level with their classmates and peers, which they don’t share with anyone else, not even teachers or parents. When they work with each other, they remain on the same page as their peers and have greater and better understanding with each other that get their creative juices flowing.
4. Changing the approach towards STEM subjects: STEM is all about satiating human curiosity and not just preparing future doctors and engineers. Schools and educational institutions should change their approach towards STEM education and teach the subjects to address the innate curiosity in the minds of young students. Teachers and educators should pique the interest of students and encourage them to ask more and more questions.
5. Improving links with technological organizations and centers: Tech-based start-ups, technological organizations and centers are increasing at a rapid pace all over the world and increased focus is being given on new innovations, researches and development. Education institutions should improve their links with such organizations and centers and offer visiting programs and internship opportunities to students.
6. Monitoring and evaluating their study programs consistently: Educational institutions need to monitor and evaluate their study programs based on the current development in the science and technology domain as well as the local job market. The study programs need to be dynamic and keep pace with the rapidly changing technology ecosystem.
7. Creating centers of excellence and skill development centers: Educational institutions can create in-house centers of excellence and skill development centers in which students can receive training to enhance their technical skills in their respective subjects. These centers will provide advanced level of training so that students can gain an in-depth knowledge about their subjects.
8. Enhancing digital technology: Educational institutions can enhance their digital technology to make it easier for students to learn their subjects. Educators and teachers can make use of mass open online courses, online platforms, overhead projectors, 3D models, and audio-visual presentations to enable students to learn their lessons in a fun manner.
9. Integrating education with job creation: Educational institutions need to integrate education with job creation so that they can attract higher number students to pursue career in STEM education. Educational institutions and technical schools should have robust tie-ups with start-ups, corporate, research organizations, and human resources departments to provide employment opportunities to qualified students.
10. Investing in more scholarships and grants: Government, educational institutions, and influential people also need to invest more in scholarships, grants and finance education of students hailing from economically weaker sections of society so that they can pursue education in STEM subjects, which is expensive than other courses.
Information shared by LearnPick