Importance of STEM education
STEM, an acronym for ‘Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics,’ denotes a curriculum designed on the basis of these four academic disciplines. Coined in the US, STEM education method is increasingly being adopted across countries in formulating educational policies and curricula for the K-12 segment, with the intent to develop students’ interest in technological learning. This education promotes an interdisciplinary as well as applied teaching approach, which helps in integrating book-based learning with real-life applications.
STEM education has unlocked enormous job opportunities, as this field is expanding significantly. According to some studies, about 2.8 million STEM-related jobs will be created by 2018. It signifies that career prospects in this field is quite promising.
However, it is important to mention here that students equipped with STEM skills need not necessarily be scientists only. Nowadays, these skills are required for other jobs as well. Be it opting for global employment in technical and semi-technical fields, developing policies, driving innovation or fostering the country’s economy, STEM skills are quite sought after everywhere.
In India–a country boasting of its pool of IT-skilled workforce, STEM education is catching the attention of students and educationalists alike. Several initiatives—at the government as well as private level–are being taken to implement STEM education in primary, secondary and high schools of India. Nevertheless, it is necessary to integrate STEM education with every aspect of the teaching-learning process, right from teaching, learning, assessment as well as evaluation. Only a seamless integration of this education with the teaching-learning process can help in imparting skills like logical thinking, problem solving, analyzing to students, thereby brightening their career prospects.
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