ERIC Number: EJ834654
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 16
The National Perspective: Fostering the Enhancement of STEM Undergraduate Education
Ramaley, Judith A.
New Directions for Teaching and Learning, n117 p69-81 Spr 2009
The investments of federal agencies in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education are aimed at a single core question: How can educators ensure that the United States will have a well-prepared and innovative science and technology workforce in an era of increasing global competition? As the exploration of what this entails has progressed in recent years, the purview has broadened to a larger topic: identifying and developing twenty-first-century skills by focusing on how the nature of work and the economy are changing and an exploration of what it takes to be competitive in the new economy. Within STEM education in particular, another critical component of the larger context for examining the curriculum and the student experience is the remarkable change in how science and engineering knowledge is advanced today. This extraordinary revolution in the conduct of science and engineering--the kinds of questions that can be asked, the technologies available to address those questions, and the nature and complexity of the scientific community itself--is leaving the typical undergraduate experience further and further behind. It is no longer only a matter of attracting more people to the study of science and engineering disciplines and making the undergraduate experience more meaningful, as complex as those tasks are. Educators now must also overhaul the curriculum and their approach to the student experience in order to reflect the realities of how scientific understanding is advanced today and how science and technology are shaping the society and people's interactions with the rest of the world. This chapter considers how best to integrate STEM education into the larger context of the undergraduate experience to address important national concerns.
Descriptors: Undergraduate Study, Science Education, Technology Education, Engineering Education, Mathematics Education, Educational Change, Student Experience, Curriculum Development, College Students, Engineering, Education Work Relationship, Public Agencies
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States