Lack of diversity, especially gender inequality and social background are some global problems in different sectors but especially latent in the context of the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering (and the recently added concept of Arts), and Mathematics (STEAM), from primary school to university level and, therefore, labor market. When we talk about diversity, we are worried about attracting representative people from all sectors of society, different cultures, disabilities, ethnic groups, gender or sexual orientation. When the needs of some groups are not adequately addressed, we also speak of exclusion. We can assume that the low numbers in professional context are related to the low diversity in STEAM areas, starting in primary school and arriving to higher education. For example, the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study shows that only 30% of woman choose to study STEAM careers.
Taking into account the context described, CreaSTEAM project aims to provide an actualized map of the resources focused on the reduction of the diversity gap using STEAM approaches, and how to select from these resources better solutions to create a framework to implement STEAM-Labs into secondary schools. The STEAM-Labs, as a main innovation of the project, merge the solutions that we can find in FAB-Labs, MEDIA-Labs, and USER-Labs, and our approach is focused on the creation of good practices in these spaces in order to promote diversity in STEAM, where diversity also covers gender equity, and social inclusion for promotion of STEAM vocations. For achieving our goals, CreaSTEAM project will:
- Mapping initiatives related to promoting STEAM and best practices among children and young people in order to address diversity-gap (mixed method: quantitative research with qualitative evaluation)
- Develop a framework for schools to implement effective activity packages to promote diversity in STEAM in collaboration with the communities and associations of a region.
The results expected will be: the creation of a complete guide and map of resources focused on the different lines of STEAM focused on diversity-gap reduction, to make easier for any type of educational institution the implementation of new proposals; and a guide to design, create and develop STEAM projects in a new concept of specific laboratory, the STEAM-Lab, which merge the options and resources of Fab-Lab, Media-Lab and User-Lab spaces.
The CreaSTEAM project (Ref.: 2020-1-ES01-KA201-082601) is co-financed by the Erasmus + program of the European Union. The content of (this press release / statement / publication / etc.) is the sole responsibility of (name of school or education organization and training) and neither the European Commission, nor the Spanish Service for the Internationalization of Education (SEPIE) are responsible for the use that may be made of the information disclosed here.