Evolution from STEM to STE(A)M education

Source: https://steam.kofac.re.kr

STEM education was introduced in 2001 and was originally called “Science, Mathematics, Engineering and Technology”. It was an initiative created by the scientific administrators of the National Science Foundation of the USA. However, American biologist Judith Ramaley, then assistant director of education and human resources at the NSF (U.S. National Science Foundation), rearranged the word order and formed the acronym STEM.

STEM Education Initiative was created as a concept and set of educational methods that aim to provide all students with critical thinking skills and make them creative in solving problems, innovative and sought-after workforce in the labor market. STEM removes traditional barriers between these four disciplines, integrating four subjects into one cohesion curriculum (White, 2014).

STEM is an interdisciplinary approach to learning where rigorous academic concepts are linked to real-world lessons. Students apply science, technology, engineering and mathematics in contexts that create a link between school, community, business and global enterprise, enabling the development of STEM literacy, and thus the ability to compete in the modern economy.

The goals of the STE (A) M movement are to transform education and to encourage the integration of art and design into the school curriculum. Art is more broadly defined by providing different functionalities and interdisciplinary connections between the four initial pillars of STEM. Thus, it can represent the language and philological sciences used to communicate and share new knowledge, physical activity – sports, dance and physical expression, fine arts, which contribute to understanding the cultural differences of past and present, music, through knowledge of rhythm and harmony are also directly related to mathematics, as well as history, psychology, philosophy, aesthetics, ergonomics and finally, reading through human activities that can be part of science, aesthetic creation or physical expression.

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