What have countries around the world done to promote the development of STEM education in 2023?

What have countries around the world done to promote the development of STEM education in 2023?

In 2023, science education will be the keyword throughout China’s education reform and development. Nowadays, looking around the world, science education is also a high-frequency word that international organizations and many countries around the world pay attention to.

To this end, the School of International Education of Beijing Foreign Studies University panoramically scanned the global STEM education hot news in 2023, sorted out the global STEM education hot events and policies, and displayed the important and influential events about science education that occurred around the world in the past year, to This provides a reference for promoting science education in China.


UNESCO approves the establishment of the International STEM Education Institute in Shanghai.

UNESCO is working hard to promote gender equality in STEM education in Latin America, expand the talent pool in STEM fields in Latin America, and bring greater development potential to society.

In 2023, UNESCO released the report "Narrowing the Gender Gap in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics in Latin America", which introduced different types of initiatives launched by international organizations, non-governmental organizations, research centers, companies, and other entities, aiming to Close the gender gap in STEM fields in Latin America. For example, UN Women, together with other public and private institutions, launched the Global Partnership for Gender Equality in the Digital Age and implemented the Tech for Girls initiative in Argentina and Brazil to empower women by developing technical and computer skills. Its confidence in STEM fields; in Costa Rica, it launched the Science Needs Us project, focusing on the development of digital skills for women.


The UK takes multiple measures to cultivate STEM literacy among teachers and students

Currently, the UK is facing a serious shortage of STEM teachers. Research by the British National Educational Research Foundation points out that nearly one-third of new science teachers in England choose to leave their jobs within five years of joining the profession. As the largest STEM education and career support organization in the UK, STEM Learning Center (STEM Learning) provides continuous professional development support for STEM teachers in their early career through summer school training and other methods, thereby improving the retention rate of STEM teachers.

In addition, in July 2023, the British STEM Learning Center and the Ranke Foundation collaborated. The foundation pledged to donate 30,000 pounds to the center’s trust fund to provide the opportunity to conduct summer STEM research in disadvantaged K12 learners with STEM practitioners, researchers, and developers. Inspires them to actively engage in work in STEM-related fields.


Germany’s open online learning platform “STEM Campus”

In November 2023, the "STEM Campus" online central learning platform funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research was officially launched. As an important part of the German STEM Action Plan 2.0, the platform is committed to providing free, high-quality digital education opportunities to different target groups, covering climate change, artificial intelligence, children's science education, and fundraising for STEM initiatives.

In addition, the platform has developed a specialized digital learning course "STEM Campus Original" and continues to expand course resources with partners, aiming to attract learners of all ages and comprehensively promote the popularization of STEM education in Germany. To cope with challenges such as climate change and digitalization, Germany urgently needs a large number of young talents in STEM fields and needs to teach and inspire more people to master STEM skills. Therefore, the "STEM Campus" platform is of great significance in providing free, open, and innovative education programs.


Ireland Launches STEM Education Implementation Plan to 2026

In March 2023, the Irish Ministry of Education released the "STEM Education Implementation Plan to 2026", which aims to make Ireland a leader in STEM education recognized by the international community by 2026, cultivate students with comprehensive skills, and make them better adapt to future social changes.

The plan covers preschool education to secondary education and mainly includes four major aspects:

The first is to cultivate learners’s interest in STEM, ensure that all students receive high-quality STEM education, cultivate a positive learning attitude, and help them accumulate motivation to succeed in an ever-changing world.

The second is to improve the skills of teachers in preschool education and enhance their STEM knowledge and teaching skills through high-quality professional development training.

The third is to support STEM education practices, put learners’ needs at the core, continuously improve STEM education practices, and provide off-campus STEM learning opportunities.

The fourth is to innovate teaching strategies based on research evidence, establish a vibrant STEM education ecosystem, and promote the implementation results of STEM education plans.


Finland Releases STEM National Strategy and Action Plan

In May 2023, the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture released the "STEM National Strategy and Action Plan" to ensure that by 2030, individuals can improve STEM skills through lifelong learning plans, master the information literacy required to participate in the digital society and ensure that the country has sufficient STEM talents. In terms of education and teaching, the Finnish government has increased investment to continuously improve the quality of STEM education and teaching, innovate teaching methods, and improve teachers’ STEM literacy and educational skills.

In terms of school-enterprise cooperation, educational institutions and enterprises have the responsibility to jointly improve students' STEM skills, increase the scale of training of STEM professionals and experts, and meet the needs of enterprises for STEM talents. In terms of social services, through diversified methods such as immersive science education, publicity activities, and media promotions, we enhance the public’s understanding of the importance of STEM education and increase public participation in the STEM field.


Southeastern Europe and the Mediterranean region collaborate to promote STEM education

On 23 and 24 November 2023, government officials, education authorities, scientists, academics, educators, and the UNESCO Science Leadership Group from 14 countries met in Venice at the “Unlocking the potential of STEM education in South-Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean: STEM Alliance Conference”.

The meeting emphasized promoting cooperation among stakeholders, solving specific problems, promoting the exchange of creative achievements in the region, and laying the foundation for the regional STEM alliance. Several educators, global leaders, and policymakers conducted an in-depth discussion on the challenges faced by regional STEM education and adopted the "Southeast European and Mediterranean STEM Alliance Roadmap" to clarify future promotion strategies for STEM education in the region.


The United States takes multiple measures to promote the reform and development of STEM education

In October 2023, the National Science Foundation announced that it would invest more than US$5 million in the next five years to create a STEM education center at Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico to ensure that the United States maintains its global leadership in science, engineering research, and innovation. The center will provide students with opportunities to participate in research, promote professional development, and promote research and innovation in STEM fields.

In November of the same year, the United States held the 2024 Educational Technology Conference, which focused on the impact of artificial intelligence on STEM education:

The first is personalized learning. Artificial intelligence algorithms can adjust the learning experience according to student needs and provide personalized support and feedback.

The second is intelligent tutoring. Virtual tutors can match students' learning styles and learning rhythms and provide targeted guidance.

The third is data-driven insights. Teachers use artificial intelligence to analyze massive data, identify and analyze certain patterns and trends, and make efficient and wise decisions in educational practice

In December of the same year, the White House released "Cultivating Computing Literacy through STEM Education: Guidance for Federal Agencies and Stakeholders".Emphasizing the importance of computational literacy for innovation. Four key themes for integrating computing literacy into STEM education are proposed, namely basic digital skills, teacher professional development, digital ethics, and community engagement.


Canada invests in STEM fields to improve youth skills

In recent years, many new jobs and career opportunities that have emerged in Canada are related to STEM. Enterprises and social institutions have an increasingly urgent need for talents with STEM skills. There is an urgent need to develop a workforce that can sustainably respond to future challenges.

To improve scientific literacy and promote broader participation in STEM fields, the Government of Canada and its federal partners have taken several initiatives, providing greater opportunities, especially for underrepresented groups such as women and indigenous communities.

Canada’s Ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development is increasing financial support to support youth learning the digital skills they need for the jobs of the future. Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Advancing Women in Science and Engineering Chairs Program is committed to increasing the participation of women in STEM fields and promoting the inclusivity of STEM education.


Singapore establishes “New Science Center” to continue promoting STEM education

In November 2023, the Singapore Science Center Council held a groundbreaking ceremony at the site of the new science center. In 1977, the Singapore Science Center was opened, dedicated to strengthening science and technology education for young people. On this basis, the new Science Center emphasized the development of STEM education. The new science center will provide unique facilities and a wide range of programs for STEM education in Singapore, creating immersive learning experiences for visitors of all ages.

To spark an interest in discovery among children and adults alike, the new science center plans to promote deeper conversations about real-world issues such as sustainability, climate change, and generative artificial intelligence through exhibits and workshops.

In addition, the new science center will also introduce some new concepts and ideas, such as comic art exhibitions and science fiction expositions, to provide visitors with novel experiences. Construction work for the new Science Center is scheduled to start in the first half of 2024, and it will be officially opened to the public in 2027, the 50th anniversary of the Singapore Science Center.


Source of article: "China Education News", Page 9, January 4, 2024

Edition name: Global Weekly