Research Topic

STEM Education: Policy and Practices

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There is a global trend of putting the development of the interdisciplinary curricula in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as a focus of curriculum reforms in many places in the world. Curricular innovations have been driven by social needs. This is not a new phenomenon as ...

There is a global trend of putting the development of the interdisciplinary curricula in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) as a focus of curriculum reforms in many places in the world. Curricular innovations have been driven by social needs. This is not a new phenomenon as traditionally, mathematics and science have an important position in the school curricula around the world for being well-established disciplines. Mainly there are two arguments: economical (i.e., innovation in mathematics and science can translate into profitable products) & cultural (i.e., mathematics and science are among the most important cultural achievements in the past few hundreds years). Nonetheless, an invisible border often exists between well-established disciplines. STEM education very often advocated as a policy-driven educational initiative poses a challenge to interdisciplinary integration in curriculum development for both the intended and implemented curricular levels. Despite the global trends, no curricular reforms will possibly claim success without taking into consideration the diversity of the needs of various agents, society and cultures. Although there is a tendency that school curricula become more similar (because of globalization, PISA and TIMSS), it is likely that different societies realize STEM education specific to its society.

The aim of this Research Topic is to attract papers to address the following

1) An explication of the way in which STEM education policy is situated in economical and political contexts defined in a broad sense ranging from the national level to school district area level.
2) A discussion of STEM curricular initiatives that addresses such a policy; with some comments on how they interact with the policy and society needs.
3) A discussion of STEM activities and programmes in informal contexts outside the core curricula.
4) A discussion of STEM education from the perspectives of agents and processes of curriculum design, development, and reforms at school levels.
5) Classroom practices in STEM education, supported by some data and theoretical underpinnings of these practices.
6) Impact of 'STEM education' as an initiative for education system/classroom practice.


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