The UC Davis School of Education has both a long history and
growing involvement in STEM education. We are engaged in the full
continuum of STEM education, from pure research grants in how
teachers conceptualize and organize their scientific or
mathematical understanding, to how specific techniques are
implemented in classrooms, to how student learning takes place in
STEM disciplines, to STEM professional development and education
There is little disagreement that the U.S. must do a better job
of preparing the next generation for success in a truly global
economy. STEM education plays in a critical role in enabling the
United States to remain the economic and technological leader of
the Twenty-first century global marketplace.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs requiring
science, engineering or technical training will increase 24
percent between 2004 and 2014 to 6.3 million.
America’s share of the world’s science and engineering
doctorates is predicted to fall to 15 percent by 2010.
Source: US Department of Education
The National Context
Strengthening STEM instruction and learning is a priority for the
Obama administration and its Department of Education.
According to Steve Robinson, a member of the White House Domestic
Policy Counsel for the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and
special advisor to Education Secretary Arne Duncan, the solution
can be found in the U.S. Department of Education’s four major
areas of school reform: tougher standards and assessments,
effective teachers and school leaders, the use of data to inform
instruction, and tackling the problems of low-performing schools.
“Passionate educators with issue expertise can make all the
difference, enabling hands-on learning that truly engages
students — including girls and underrepresented minorities –
and preparing them to tackle the grand challenges of the 21st
century such as increasing energy independence, improving
people’s health, protecting the environment, and strengthening
national security,” said President Obama.