What is STEM Learning?

STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education. STEM Learning is an interdisciplinary approach that helps students succeed in future learning and in their career path. The focus of a STEM learning is generally hands-on, problem or project-based learning.

The National Science Teaching Association explains, STEM is not a curriculum, but rather a way of organizing and delivering instruction. It is not another “ingredient” in the lesson “soup,” but the recipe for helping learners apply their knowledge and skills, collaborate with their peers, and understand the relevance of what they are learning.

Over the past 25 years, STEM education has been evolving from a cluster of four overlapping disciplines (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) toward a more cohesive knowledge base and skill set critical for the 21st century.

STEM literacy translates into employment in the increasingly knowledge-based economy here in Minnesota, across the country and around the world. STEM literacy means gainful employment in higher-earning jobs for today and tomorrow’s work force. According to the Pew Research Center, (Graf et al 2018) data shows that STEM workers earn approximately 25% more than similarly educated non-STEM workers, regardless of the education level attained.