Bringing STEM Curricula to life through public engagement
Bringing STEM Curricula to life through public engagement was jointly organised by the NCCPE and the National HE STEM program at the Aston Business School Conference Centre. From this page you can download presentations and read an overview of the day.
Opening Plenary: The role of public engagement for students and for the STEM curriculum
Presented by Paul Manners, Director, National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement, Danielle Grufferty, Vice President Society & Citizenship, NUS; Ivan Moore, HE Curriculum Advisor on the HE STEM Programme; Paul Taylor, Associate Professor and Director of the Institute for Advanced Teaching & Learning, Warwick University.
Following the presentations a wide ranging discussion took place, ideas and challenges raised included:
- Academics and therefore students may struggle to apply their subject to real-life problems
- Students and staff don’t often get accredited or rewarded for the work that they do within communities
- There is a great value to working with student/learner ideas and vision and utilising the outreach, volunteering centres, students unions to support curriculum development
- Respect, responsibility and reason: these should be the 3Rs of Education
- The importance of exploring the 2 way nature of engagement: co-creation, collaboration and partnerships - generating new knowledge.
The slides from the workshops are available to download below.
Enhancing student employability through ethics-themed schools outreach activities and open educational resources, Dr Dave Lewis, Senior Lecturer in Neuroscience & Scientific Ethics, University of Leeds.
Engineering community based learning at the University of Bristol, Dr Kate Miller, Centre for Public Engagement, University of Bristol
Community Action + Knowledge Exchange; community engagement within and beyond the undergraduate curriculum, Dr Nick Plant, Faculty of Computer Science and Creative Technologies, University of the West of England
Assessing student learning from public engagement, David Owen, National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement
Learning to make a difference – student community engagement, Debra Vice-Holt, Community University Partnership Programme, University of Brighton
Developing curricula for community outcomes with Dr Angela Piccini, Senior Lecturer in Screen Media, University of Bristol. Watch the the Prezi here.
Participants were invited to form groups and explore further themes arising from the day. The groups formed and a summary of discussions is written below.
Developing a community of practice to generate and share ideas & and developing project ideas for STEM curricula that bring in a wider set of community partners.
The group discussed the possibilities to bring together a network of HEIs with a common interest around this field. They looked at tools that might help facilitate that network and sharing of practice - such as Wiki’s, and talked about common challenges that might bring the network together such as assessment, evaluation and curriculum development.
Ways of building partnership with community partners
The group discussed the ethical dimension of engagement: extraction vs. true partnerships and began to develop proposals for an ‘authentic listening exercise’ gathering evidence from community partners about worse practice in university-community relationships, and ensuring that we do not pre-structure the evidence gathering with our own agenda.
Practical ways in which staff can be supported to develop their skills in this area
The importance of communication skills and embedding this in training and development from an early stage. Academics need to be able to communicate effectively with community partners and with students. Discussed the possibility of ‘engagement fellowships’ for academics to develop practice.
Exploring models for student leadership / involvement and resources to support this
The possibility of a one day workshop looking at student/learner engagement in this area. Students can be leaders in curriculum development, and can also play a vital role in evaluating provision.
I am a beginner, anyone else?
The small group had a swap shop of ideas and discussed the challenges that they were experiencing. They noted that the definitions and interpretations of public engagement were quite varied.
London Transport Museum
A delegate from the London Transport Museum used the open space to look at how NCCPEs framework for assessing student learning from public engagement could be applied in an extra-curricular context.
Following the event the NCCPE and the National HE STEM Programme invited participants to bid for up to £1k to take forward key lessons learnt.