About this Research Topic
In the field of science education, the themes of agency, anticipation, future and models of change and transformation have gained an increasing (but still too little) attention during the past decade. Some literature has been published in order to develop science education for action and to facilitate students’ action competence in socio-scientific issues. Several initiatives promoting futures thinking, foresight, imagination and future narratives in science classrooms have been reported. Besides the research on students’ learning and transformation, a number of initiatives have focused on institutional level changes: the emerging objectives necessitate the exploration of alternative scenarios for schools, e.g. open schooling.
Yet, more theoretical, empirical and practical work is needed to support transformation both at institutional and individual levels, and put into operation the potential of science education in fostering students’ agency and future thinking for sustainability. We propose this Research Topic to facilitate new syntheses of theoretical and methodological approaches by sharing perspectives among researchers on educational sciences (either general or specific to science, technology or STEM) but also science and technology studies (STS), futures studies, youth studies and other social sciences.
In this Research Topic we are particularly interested in aspects related to questions such as the following. How can science education support students in imagining possibilities of the future and/or taking action for a desirable change? To that end, what kind of research is needed on students’ perceptions of science and technology, the future, and opportunities to influence the future? How are such perceptions connected to students’ perceived agency in the present and in the future? How can we facilitate students to turn their thinking into action? How can science curricula be revised to foster such “future-scaffolding skills”? What kind of changes can be imagined for schools in order to futurize science education?
- theoretical/position papers and opinion pieces reflecting on the emerging, agency-related aims of science education and suggesting approaches to address them
- empirical papers on students’ futures thinking and/or agency with regard to science and technology (or STEM?)
- empirical papers on promising pedagogical approaches as well as institutional changes to address these issues in any level of science education (primary, secondary or higher education).
Keywords: science education, futures thinking, agency, education for sustainable development, transformative education
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.