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Secondary Teachers' Perceptions and Needs Analysis on Integrative STEM Education

통합 STEM 교육에 대한 중등 교사의 인식과 요구

  • Received : 2011.07.04
  • Accepted : 2012.01.30
  • Published : 2012.02.29

Abstract

Educational communities around the world have concentrated on integrative efforts among science, technology, engineering and mathematics (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics: STEM) subjects. Korea has focused on integrative education among STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) school subjects to raise talented human resources in the fields of science and technology. The purpose of this study was to analyze secondary school science, technology, and mathematics teacher's perceptions and needs toward integrated education and integrative STEM education. A total of 251 secondary school teachers from all areas of the country who have taught science, mathematics, and technology were surveyed by using a self-reported instrument. The findings were as follows: First, teachers have used little integrated education in their classes due to insufficient time in the actual preparation of the integrated education and the lack of expertise, teaching experience, and teaching-learning materials for the integrated education, while they have positive thoughts about the need of integrated education. Second, they presented several needs to facilitate the integrated education: development of a variety of integrated programs, school administrative and financial support, and in-service teachers' training. Third, overall perception toward integrated STEM education was not sufficient, but most teachers perceived the need toward integrated STEM education due to students' development in their creativity, thinking skills, and adaptability. Fourth, they perceived that it was imperative to develop the various integrated STEM education programs, distribute the materials, and help STEM teachers' understanding toward integrated STEM education. Fifth, they perceived that the most relevant method to integrate STEM subjects was the problem solving approach. In addition, they appreciate that the integrated STEM education is highly efficient in not only developing integrated problem solving skills and STEM related literacy, but also in positively impacting the rise of talented human resources in the fields of science and technology. In order to increase the awareness of STEM-related secondary school teachers and vitalize the integrated STEM education, it is necessary to develop and spread a variety of programs, effective teaching and learning materials, and teachers' training programs.

Keywords

Integrated education;Integrated STEM education;Science education;Technology education;Mathematics education

Acknowledgement

Supported by : 한국연구재단

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