STEM the Tide
Reforming Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Education in America
Publication Year: 2011
Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press
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One of the distinguishing features of higher education in the United States is the frequency with which college students change their major fields of study. While undergraduates in most other countries of the world pretty much stick with their initial courses of study as they prepare for particular types of professions or careers, many American college students earn their degrees in a field ...
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As a first-year graduate student, I assisted in an evaluation of a mathematics reform program. In one way or another, I have been focused on STEM education ever since then. In this book I draw together much of what I have learned. More to the point, above and beyond my own modest contributions to this literature, I have scoured journals, books, reports, magazines, and newspapers to ...
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Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education is vital preparation for todayâs high-tech information economy. Unfortunately, American students lag their counterparts in most other countries in achievement. This book presents a positive blueprint for reforming STEM education in our schools, colleges, and universities. The United States (and, indeed, much of the world) is reeling from a severe ...
CHAPTER 1: Americaâs Place in the World
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The National Commission on Excellence in Education declared an emergency in American education a quarter century ago. Has the mediocrity been replaced by excellence? The short answer is no. In 2007, in another National Commission report, Intel Corporation spokesman Howard High soberly predicted even more outsourcing, seeking talent overseas: âWe go where the smart people are ...
CHAPTER 2: The Achievement Gap
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Why are we not competitive in STEM education? In preparing a previous book, Aptitude Revisited: Rethinking Math and Science Education for Americaâs Next Century, I concluded that there was one fundamental flaw in our system. Other factors, especially poverty, played a role, but there was, and still is, one basic problem: Far too many students are blocked from opportunities to master STEM because ...
CHAPTER 3: Effective Leadership, Careful Evaluation
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As discussed in chapter 1, in the current high-tech global economy STEM education is of vital importance. Yet international assessments of math and science achievement have consistently placed American students below their counterparts from most other nations. Furthermore, the science career ladder for women in the United States has hit a glass ceiling, and a persistent achievement ...
CHAPTER 4: Top-Notch Teachers
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No matter how many task forces are convened, how many curriculum projects are funded, or how many high-stakes tests are given, successful education ultimately comes down to the interaction and communication between a teacher and his students. Therefore, the surest way to improve STEM education in America is to improve teaching. We need to ...
CHAPTER 5: Mentors and High Expectations
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Once a student decides to attend college, we want him or her to succeed, to achieve, and to graduate. The attrition rate in Americaâs colleges is a national disgrace. The loss of talent represented by the attrition of STEM majors is significant and disturbing. Far too many STEM students either transfer out of the sciences or drop out of college. This problem is more severe for women, students ...
CHAPTER 6: Closing the Achievement Gap
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In this chapter, I review how the powerful combination of committed mentors and high expectations has closed the achievement gap at a variety of institutions. We will examine data on the academic progress of disadvantaged students and study the strategies that contributed to their success. Despite the impressive student achievements, a reader of the original Treisman Berkeley report might have asked whether these workshops would be effective ...
CHAPTER 7: College Access and the STEM Pipeline: The Case of Nevada
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As students make their way through school, there are points when they may become less likely to study math and scienceâpoints where they may be lost forever from the STEM pipeline. One critical juncture is the transition from high school to college. We must make mathematics and science available and attractive to virtually every student in middle and high schools. If skilled teachers ...
CHAPTER 8: The Value of a College Education in the Global Economy
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In the introduction I mentioned the competition between contestants with âbook smartsâ versus those with âstreet smartsâ on Donald Trumpâs blockbuster television program The Apprentice. This contest pitted a team of college graduates against a team of high school graduates. The show prompted me to write an opinion piece in which I questioned what people can learn from an admittedly ...
CHAPTER 9: Supporting University Research
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One of Americaâs great advantages in the global economy is our higher education system. In sharp contrast to the reputation of its elementary and secondary schools, U.S. colleges and universities are the envy of the world. To this day, American scientists and engineers set the pace for innovation. American STEM students have the valuable opportunity to learn from the worldâs leading researchers ...
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Ultimately, this is a book about power in U.S. society. Better educational opportunitiesâespecially in the STEM fieldsâgive students more power over their own lives. The in e qual ity in our economy is staggering. Throughout history, people with power have controlled the means for the weak and disenfranchised to improve their positions. In the emerging global economy, upward social mobility ...
Appendix. International Assessments of STEM Achievement in the Twentieth Century
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Page Count: 264
Illustrations: 1 line drawing
Publication Year: 2011