Next Article in Journal
Improving the Success of First Term General Chemistry Students at a Liberal Arts Institution
Next Article in Special Issue
Teachers’ Thoughts on Student Decision Making During Engineering Design Lessons
Previous Article in Journal
Early Childhood Education Intervention Programs in the Netherlands: Still Searching for Empirical Evidence
Previous Article in Special Issue
Narrative Inquiry on the Teaching of STEM to Blind High School Students
Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceArticle

Integrated STEM: Focus on Informal Education and Community Collaboration through Engineering

1
School of Teacher Education, University of Wyoming, 1000 E University Ave, Laramie, WY 82071, USA
2
Wyoming Game and Fish Department, 5400 Bishop Blvd, Cheyenne, WY 82006, USA
3
College of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Wyoming, 1000 E University Ave, Laramie, WY 82071, USA
4
Educational Foundations and Leadership, University of Toledo, 2801 W Bancroft St, Toledo, OH 43606, USA
5
Biodiversity Institute, University of Wyoming, 1000 E University Ave, Laramie, WY 82071, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010004
Received: 1 November 2017 / Revised: 19 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 1 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Teaching and Learning in STEM Education)
This article showcases STEM as an interdisciplinary field in which the disciplines strengthen and support each other (not as separate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines). The authors focus on an open-ended, complex problem—water quality—as the primary teaching and learning task. The participants, middle school female students (aged 9–15 years), interacted in an informal educational setting (i.e., Girl Scouts) on a research project investigating river quality following the river’s restoration. The community, including Girl Scout participants, leaders, parents, university faculty, graduate students, and others, utilized an action research (AR) approach when interacting with the participants. Methods such as observational field notes, focus groups, and collected artifacts were commonly employed. The authors describe the history of STEM and AR leading to authentic science research projects through eight engineering skills/practices (incorporating science, technology, and mathematics) and showcase participant interactions, implementation, and community engagement in the STEM water quality river project. Findings indicate that informal engineering based projects can serve as opportunities for participants to connect with integrated STEM. Implications include the need for engaging participants in informal authentic science to support traditional school STEM learning and encouraging community engagement in integrated STEM to support traditional K-12 classroom instruction. View Full-Text
Keywords: informal education; science education; engineering education; integrated STEM; water quality; Girl Scouts; authentic science, NGSS; problem-based learning; community engagement; social justice informal education; science education; engineering education; integrated STEM; water quality; Girl Scouts; authentic science, NGSS; problem-based learning; community engagement; social justice
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Burrows, A.; Lockwood, M.; Borowczak, M.; Janak, E.; Barber, B. Integrated STEM: Focus on Informal Education and Community Collaboration through Engineering. Educ. Sci. 2018, 8, 4. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010004

AMA Style

Burrows A, Lockwood M, Borowczak M, Janak E, Barber B. Integrated STEM: Focus on Informal Education and Community Collaboration through Engineering. Education Sciences. 2018; 8(1):4. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010004

Chicago/Turabian Style

Burrows, Andrea; Lockwood, Meghan; Borowczak, Mike; Janak, Edward; Barber, Brian. 2018. "Integrated STEM: Focus on Informal Education and Community Collaboration through Engineering" Educ. Sci. 8, no. 1: 4. https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010004

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop