Menu

Education Today Logo


newsletter

Education Today Cover Browse Issue

Swinburne project encourages women into STEM

News Image

Swinburne University of Technology researchers have started on a project, titled ‘Standing out from the Crowd’, targeting 20 urban and 10 rural Victorian secondary schools and seeking to encourage women in STEM.

They aim to create and evaluate the effectiveness of educational resources including profiles of highly successful enterprising women in STEM, and train teachers to deliver these resources in the classroom.

“We aim to use entrepreneurship as a vehicle for developing an interest in STEM. These skills are essential for navigating the working landscape of the future,” says Associate Professor Naomi Birdthistle, who is leading the project.

“There is an increasing trend towards including the teaching of enterprise skills such as problem solving, communication and presentation, digital literacy, teamwork, critical thinking, creativity and financial literacy in STEM subject matter,” Birdthistle says.

She says one reason for this is that, for some students, STEM content-matter can be more palatable when experienced through an enterprise lens – they can see the application of STEM content in the real world.

“Enterprise education provides students with short and long-term benefits both in and beyond the classroom. In the short term, it can positively influence students’ motivation, retention and connectedness. In the long term, entrepreneurship education at primary and secondary school levels has been found to be an effective means of shaping enterprise-related abilities in later life.”

Birdthistle says developing enterprise skills in Australians, particularly in our youth, is an Australian Government economic imperative.

“Of equal importance is the imperative to address the under-representation of females in STEM in order to help today’s girls become the entrepreneurial STEM women of tomorrow.”

Project funded by The Invergowrie Foundation
The project has been funded by The Invergowrie Foundation, whose primary mission is to advance the education of girls and women in Victoria. The strategic direction for the Foundation for the next three to five years is to focus on improving opportunities for girls using a STEM lens.

Established in 1992, the Invergowrie Foundation is a public charitable trust made possible through the McPherson Family gift of their property ‘Invergowrie’ in 1933.


11 Apr 2019 | National
AITSL Stakeholder Survey now open News Image

Teachers, school leaders and the entire education sector can have their say in the 2019 Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Survey which is open now. Read More

11 Apr 2019
Early career teachers get dramatic with NIDA News Image

NIDA continues to invest in the creative practice of early career teachers in primary and secondary schools with the 2019 Creative Ambassador’s Initiative.
Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
New teachers love induction support app News Image

Downloaded more than 17,000 times, the AITSL My Induction app offers expert advice, answers to frequently asked questions and allows new teachers to track their professional wellbeing. Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
Reform of preschools front and centre in election period News Image

Research shows that two years of quality preschool sets a child up for success, and happily the issue is gaining traction with politicians.
Read More

10 Apr 2019 | National
Domestic violence causes homelessness News Image

The number of people seeking help from homelessness services due to domestic and family violence has risen in recent years but only 4% of those who approached a homelessness service for long-term housing actually received it. Read More