ERIC Number: EJ834649
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 13
The Climate for Undergraduate Teaching and Learning in STEM Fields
Baldwin, Roger G.
New Directions for Teaching and Learning, n117 p9-17 Spr 2009
Undergraduate education in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) needs improvement, a conclusion that multiple national reports over the past two decades have reached. Critiques of STEM education may emphasize different aspects of the STEM undergraduate education problem. Nevertheless, each delivers one clear and consistent message: undergraduate education in STEM fields is not adequate to the task of preparing workers for the technologically driven economy or developing a scientifically literate citizenry capable of engaging in informed dialogue and decision making on important public policy issues. The report of the National Research Council's Committee on Undergraduate Science Education (1999) describes a nation divided into a technologically knowledgeable elite and a disadvantaged majority. The challenge facing educators in STEM is great. They need to "teach large numbers of students with diverse backgrounds and interests" and prepare them for a rapidly changing world where science and technology are increasingly important. To fulfill these objectives adequately, STEM teaching practices need to be more inclusive and flexible as the United States becomes increasingly diverse. The author contends that the climate for improving undergraduate STEM education can be improved substantially by the actions of many concerned stakeholders: professors, educational leaders, professional societies, and government agencies, among others.
Descriptors: Undergraduate Study, Science Education, Technology Education, Engineering Education, Mathematics Education, Scientific Literacy, Conventional Instruction, Lecture Method, Educational Environment, Education Work Relationship, Employment Potential, Educational Change
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States