Academic journal article Research-Technology Management

Improve, Expand K-12 Engineering Education, Report Urges

Academic journal article Research-Technology Management

Improve, Expand K-12 Engineering Education, Report Urges

Article excerpt

For at least 50 years, imaginative teachers and engineers have attempted to introduce some form of engineering education into U.S. high schools. But despite these sporadic efforts, only a small number of students have actually had such exposure.

Indeed, a new report from the National Academy of Engineering and the National Research Council observes that "engineering might be called the missing letter in STEM," the collective acronym for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics instruction.

The report, which finds engineering often missing from policy discussions and the classroom, recognizes that introduction of K-12 engineering education "has the potential to improve student learning and achievement in science and mathematics, increase awareness about what engineers do and of engineering as a potential career, and boost students' technological literacy."

The committee that wrote the report recommended that:

* The U.S. National Science Foundation or Department of Education fund research to determine how science inquiry and mathematical reasoning can be connected to engineering design in curricula and professional development.

* Foundations and federal agencies with an interest in K-12 engineering education conduct long-term research to confirm and refine findings of studies of the impacts of engineering education. …

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