Recently, the number of graduates holding science related majors decreased about 27% according to a survey done by the National Science Board. We’re seeing this as the trend in science related subjects such as computer science, technology, math, engineering, and laboratory science. We sought out to find out why.
It’s an inspirational thought. The harder you work, the greater rewards you receive. For many, science is fun, but for the majority of us right brain-ers, science involves a lot of hard work and analysis. Educators and politicians have been up in arms about educational reform. Well, here’s a thought. How do we rejuvenate science as not only a discipline and industry, but attract more engineers, programmers, mathematicians, chemists, analysts? What kind of impact will a slowed technology and science industry have on the global race? Surely, it won’t do America any good seeing to as how Asia and Russia’s science industries are booming with innovation and technological advances as we speak. To make things worse, America isn’t looking to great compared to its global rivals when our students are performing poorly in schools when it comes to math and science.
Recently, Obama called to industry groups and college students to encourage more growth in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) industries. But we think the way to really rejuvenate the science system is start from the bottom and build up. Science and math must be built upon information learned in previous education. One doesn’t just become a science nerd in a year. So we propose classrooms from kindergarten through high school level a crucial time period to build a foundation for strong STEM skills. If students during this time period receive a solid basis in science and math they may feel greater compelled and encouraged to stick with it during college and onwards.
Making science and math fun to learn is the only way to keep innovation alive. We must educate the upcoming generation so that great changes may occur. Let’s face it, no one likes to balance equations, they want hands on learning and real world applications to science and math. Middle and high school students have reported that they are learning the most and having the most fun with it-while actively testing out Newton’s first law of motion, or being able to apply chemistry and math to something relevant to their lives. These subjects just aren’t appealing if learnt through textbooks only. In college it is different. Not only are these classes dry, but overpacked, and very difficult to get an A. Turns out, calculus, and science classes are usually the “weed-out” classes and rather than encouraging students to enter the medical or science field, these weed-out classes are designed to keep students away. Low grades are the #1 cause in deterring students from pursuing a STEM related career.
So, how can reinvigorate the science discipline? Another way is to offer accredited online courses in which students can better their understanding of difficult science and math courses that would otherwise scare them away from pursuing engineering or pre-medical careers. On their own time and online is a much more supportive and relaxed way of learning an otherwise very difficult subject. Online science degrees may very well make a large influence and impact on science and the way we learn scientific concepts.