A new approach in the making: reinvigorating engineering education in UK schools

Trowsdale, Jo and Davies, Richard (2022) A new approach in the making: reinvigorating engineering education in UK schools. Proceedings of the 8th International Symposium for Engineering Education. ISSN 9781914241208

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The value of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) education, for STEM subjects and for developing the outcomes desired of a broader education, has seen significant interest in recent years. In the UK educational pathways into engineering are limited and engineering is rarely mentioned in the curriculum. Its closest partner, Design Technology, is typically under-resourced, especially in primary schools. However, the perceived value of STEAM in primary education has led to a range of different initiatives which have made this a fertile testbed for new approaches; approaches which will, over the coming decade, filter through all phases of education. Critically, STEAM has been identified, through its fusion with the arts, as fostering creative thinking in ways useful to STEM, particularly engineering. Additionally, it is argued that STEAM, if implemented early enough, can diversify the range of individuals considering careers in engineering.
We draw on research of a five-year, primary education arts-engineering project which showed the efficacy of this active, embodied, inquiry-based STEAM approach in developing confident, creative learners, who felt they had agency in their learning, and a further two-year project working with teachers to design innovative art-engineering schemes of work following this model. The research explores the views of the engineers/designers, teachers, artists and pupils involved.
The model developed from the research, the Trowsdale Art-Making Model for Education (TAME), has been tested by teachers as a practical approach to designing more embodied and inquiry-based curricula and pedagogies which teachers claim has enabled pupils to develop greater agency, confidence and competence in creative design and making practices. The engineers involved identified these behaviours as critical in fostering children’s interest, and in coaching their ability in engineering.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: TAME, imagineerium, compulsory education, design technology, STEAM
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Arts, Business & Applied Social Science > Department of Young People & Education
Depositing User: Jo Trowsdale
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2022 08:39
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2022 08:39
URI: https://oars.uos.ac.uk/id/eprint/2699

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