Re-imaging STEAM outreach: The role of interdisciplinarity in (re)engaging underrepresented students

Conference paper


Lawson, F. and Colley, S. 2022. Re-imaging STEAM outreach: The role of interdisciplinarity in (re)engaging underrepresented students.
AuthorsLawson, F. and Colley, S.
TypeConference paper
Description

The barrier to STEM engagement at post-16 and Higher Education is twofold firstly compartmentalisation of STEM in formal learning leads to reduced perception of its relevance/accessibility, secondly students from underrepresented backgrounds frequently have little or no science capital. These barriers mean that students have poorer science attainment (ASE 2018), and are three times less likely to take triple science GCSE (Archer et al. 2016, 302) influencing the STEAM opportunities available at post-16 and HE.

In response to this challenge, we will briefly present how Inspiring Minds uses an interdisciplinary pedagogy to underpin a sustained engagement programme of informal science learning, leading to statistically significant shifts in students’ aspiration and Key Stage 4 attainment.

Running since 2017, Inspiring Minds was developed to reach students who have disengaged with the content-heavy science curriculum through using Big Questions related to the interaction of STEAM and society and providing students the opportunity to develop their own research that has a real-world application through a CREST Award. We know it makes a difference, but we now want to broaden their horizons further.

This workshop is a call to action – we want to know what (STEAM-related) topics/questions/issues from your discipline could be introduced into the Inspiring Minds programme and work with you to create something innovative that reflects the opportunities your sector has to offer. We are particularly keen to hear from areas that are not prominent in the secondary curriculum: archaeology, creative industries, ecology… we’re looking at you!
The research presented in this session is part of the Epistemic Insight Initiative into interdisciplinary research and learning led by LASAR in collaboration with CCCU’s KaMCOP School and College Engagement Team, this session explores ways that this research can create and inform research-engaged widening participation practice and broaden aspiration and opportunity for students to pursue STEAM.

KeywordsEpistemic Insight; Inspiring Minds; Widening participation; Interdisciplinary learning; Informal science learning; STEM education
Year2022
ConferenceCCCU Interdisciplinary Learning and Research Conference “Tackling the Big Challenges Together”
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Deposited18 Jul 2022
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https://repository.canterbury.ac.uk/item/917y1/re-imaging-steam-outreach-the-role-of-interdisciplinarity-in-re-engaging-underrepresented-students

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