Appraising the E in STEM Education: Creative Alternatives to “Engineering”

Susan Blackley, Rachel Sheffield

Abstract


This paper examines the ongoing dilemma of successfully integrating science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education into classrooms, and considers how re-imaging the components of STEM could lead to more positive outcomes. The paper considers three alternative options for the E in STEM: Enquiry, Ethics, and Environment, and in each case we examine how this could be developed and integrated into the curriculum. Finally we investigate “E for Engineering”, as it was originally conceived in the acronym, and consider how this could be refined and developed to reflect the application of knowledge and the incorporation of 21st century skills. The implications are clear: teachers and policy makers must be innovative and imaginative to garner exciting STEM opportunities in order to equip future citizens with the necessary skills and strategies for a globally productive and informed future.

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