About Integrating STEM Education at CU Boulder
Integrating STEM Education: Towards an Institute
A Signature Program of the University of Colorado Boulder
Integrating STEM Education (iSTEM) is a response to the National Academy's report, Rising Above the Gathering Storm (RAGS), which identifies a number of critical reasons to support and enhance STEM infrastructure in the United States. These range from the importance of effective STEM education in an increasingly competitive global society to issues of national security. The Report calls for four avenues of action to support U.S. science and engineering; in priority order the calls are to "focus on actions in K-12 education (10,000 Teachers, 10 Million Minds, Research (Sowing the Seeds), higher education (Best and Brightest), and economic policy (Incentives for Innovation)." iSTEM is poised to respond to the first three suggestions directly and, indirectly to the fourth.
Integrating STEM Education is a solution for the lack of cohesion between disciplines in regards to the training of future science teachers and STEM education research. Efforts associated with the training of teachers and research into effective teaching practiced within Schools of Education have often failed to be communicated to STEM disciplines, and conversely, key insights from these disciplines fail to impact the training of future teachers at K-12, college, and post-graduate levels.
The result of moving towards an Institute for STEM Education is to integrate three line of inquiry and development: education, education research and teacher preparation while retaining the status and rigor offered through science and engineering departmental identity and to expand our already growing community of scholars focused on education issues in mathematics and science education. We seek to integrate our existing three lines of inquiry and development to generate new types of students, new types of research, and new activities for faculty that are relevant toward creating a 21st Century model of a Research University that can address the Rising Above the Gathering Storm call for action, immediately and institutionally.