The Importance of the A in the Move from STEM towards STE[A]M

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The Importance of the A in the Move from STEM towards STE[A]M

By Robert PawloskiIn standard10th December, 2015

by Dr. Robert Pawloski, UND CEHD STEM Coordinator


It is critical for our nation and North Dakota, in order to remain competitive in a global economy, to expand the STEM workforce pipeline to produce and develop highly skilled professionals and academics in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. The UND STEM Initiative aims to assist UND STEM undergraduate discipline education by coordinating and advocating: discipline-based educational research (DBER); early undergraduate research (EUR), and active learning and undergraduate engagement. 

Integrative STEAM Education

UND STEM Initiative is advocating to UND’s College of Education and Human Development to leverage STEM discipline expertise, along with Arts, Design and Humanities into the preparation of tomorrow’s educators and professional development of those in the field. This concept would span disciplines and levels, utilize engineering design and scientific inquiry processes, as well as the 21st Century skills of Communication, Collaboration, Creativity and Critical Thinking Skills, to engage learners in addressing real world problems.

STEAM for All

“STEAM for All” reflects the essential need for all citizens to be STEAM literate, fulfilling these demands of life in the 21st Century:

  • bringing a full skill-set to growing array of occupations and careers;
  • promoting understanding, support and advocacy for STEAM incentives in policy and legislation;
  • living a productive and fulfilling life in today’s society

Social Emotional Learning

Across all disciplines, levels and sectors, the Triple Focus of Daniel Goleman and Peter Senge is applicable, relevant, and critical as more employers demand soft skills in all careers. The triple focus advocates that critical measureable outcomes in education should include awareness of: focus, grit and perseverance in SELF; empathy for OTHERS we work with, teach or are our customers; and the SYSTEM(s) we live and work in.


Loren Eisley’s The Immense Journey

What is STEAM? In this climate of economic uncertainty, America is once again turning to innovation as the way to ensure a prosperous future. We need to add Art + Design to the equation — to transform STEM into STEAM.

Corwin: From STEM to STEAM: Using Brain-Compatible Strategies to Integrate the Arts: David A. Sousa:
Sousa & Pilecki: “Can STEM Really Succeed?”

The Congressional STEAM Caucus May Turn STEM to STEAM in the Reauthorization of ESEA. – Who Needs Philosophers? Scientists, Politicians and Welders Do

The Myth Of The Unemployed Humanities Major.

A National Survey of Business and Non Profit Leaders:
It Takes More Than A Major: Employer Priorities For College Learning And Student Success: Overview And Key Findings

The Board of Higher Education Workforce at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine advocate the Integration of Education in the Humanities, Science, Engineering and Medicine.

Sprouting from his PBS series Scientific American Frontiers, Alan Alda has created a Center at Stony Brook University in New York that conducts workshops utilizing improvisational theater games to help scientists communicate more directly and personally.

Steam Not Stem | Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics

STEAM: A Framework for Teaching Across the Disciplines

STEM to STEAM: Resource Roundup | Edutopia

North Dakota Department of Public Instruction’s STEAM Initiative

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