Posts tagged ‘Science’

Pisa: Gender and science career expectations among teens

PISA in Focus,  (#69, February 2017), is titled What kind of careers in science do 15-year-old boys and girls expect for themselves? DOI:10.1787/76e7442c-en.

From page 5, the Bottom Line:

“Influenced by their family and by popular culture, girls often think of scientists as men in lab coats, see computer science as a “masculine” field, and think that success in science is due to brilliance – which they often find difficult to attribute to themselves – rather than to hard work. Such stereotypes may have some truth to them, but they often discourage young women who are capable and interested in science from envisaging a number of careers in science, technology or engineering.

Schools can counter these stereotypes, and help students cultivate a more inclusive view of science, through better career information. Students should have access to information that is accurate, credible and avoids unrealistic or exaggerated portrayals of career options. Employers and educators in perceived “masculine” or “feminine” fields can also help eliminate existing stereotypes, such as by promoting awareness that computer sciences (“masculine” and “nerdy”) help solve health problems (“feminine” and “caring”), or by reaching out and establishing direct contact with students and schools. And teachers can play an important role in cultivating boys’ and girls’ interests in a diverse range of science topics.”

Read the blog, Doctors and nurses are from Venus, scientists and engineers are from Mars (for now)  here .

Check it out! Rowan



March 3, 2017 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Canadian teens and their science futures/careers

Lets talk science and AMGEN have released a report titled  Spotlight on Science Learning – Shaping Tomorrow’s Workforce: What do Canada’s Teens Think About Their Futures?  [PDF]

From page 5: “A new survey shows that a high percentage of Canadian teens like science and believe it is fun. Yet students often struggle to recognize how STEM supports the types of roles and careers they value, and can benefit them in any work setting.”

Page 24: “What to do K-12 educators Make STEM learning relevant to students by providing contexts that are meaningful to them. Increase the focus on the nature and processes of science to help students develop competencies needed for 21st-century academic and workplace success.”

Also, check out their  Teens love Science infographic.



April 1, 2015 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Review these Science / STEM web resouces

Here are some internet resources, based on excellent reviews released in recent professional journals that you might be interested in checking out. Always review sites for appropriateness.


Subtitled The Best Science on the Web is for grades 8 +.  From their About page :” Sparticl is a new web and mobile service for teens, a collection of the very best the web has to offer in science, technology, engineering, and math or STEM. Sparticl includes answers to science questions, images, videos, games, and hands-on activities, all curated by a team of experts.”

There are navigation tabs for the following headings: Living Things, Matter & Energy, Tech & Innovation, Body & Brain, Earth & Science, Explore. When the links navigate off site, you will encounter advertising.

Check out their Educator Guide:

STEMcoach is free for teachers and provides STEM teachers with curriculum resources, hands-on investigations, ready-made research lessons, classroom tips, online chats with other teachers, videos.

The why? Files: The science behind the news

Provides science resources connected to science news headlines (background information, science connections, images, video clips, etc ). Content supports: Arts & Humanities, Biology, Earth  & Space, Environment, Health, Physical Science, Social Science, Technology.

Check ’em out! Rowan

March 16, 2015 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

OECD Report on Gender Equality (especially math, science, STEM)

“Many countries have been successful in closing gender gaps in learning outcomes. But even when boys and girls are equally proficient in mathematics and science, their attitudes towards learning and aspirations for their future are markedly different – and that has a significant impact on their decision to pursue further education and on their choice of career. The ABC of Gender Equality in Education: Aptitude, Behaviour, Confidence tries to determine why, in the 64 countries and economies covered, 15-year-old boys are more likely than girls, on average, to be overall low achievers, and why high-performing 15-year-old girls underachieve in mathematics, science and problem solving compared to high-achieving boys. As the evidence in the report makes clear, gender disparities in school performance stem from students’ attitudes towards learning and their behaviour in school, from how they choose to spend their leisure time, and from the confidence they have – or do not have – in their own abilities as students.” Source:

Also ” Less than one in 20 girls considers a career in science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) compared to one in five boys, despite similar performances in the OECD’s PISA science test. This matters because careers in these fields are in high demand and among the most highly paid.

OECD PISA surveys have shown that girls lack the same self-confidence as boys in science and maths and new analysis reveals striking differences in parental encouragement that exacerbate the problem.”


Read the OECD report here The ABC of Gender Equality in Education: Aptitude, Behaviour, Confidence.

Check it out!


March 5, 2015 at 4:12 pm Leave a comment

CMEC – Assessment Matters #8 on Science

CMEC has released Assessment Matters #8, titled PCAP 2013 – Science Resources for Teachers.

Personally, I find this title a little misleading. I guess I expected a list of Canadian and international sources of information supporting science education/teaching of science. And this is not it.

Selections from the document include:

“It provides an overview of the Pan-Canadian Assessment Program (PCAP) and presents 14  science items from the PCAP 2013 Science Assessment with commentary on student  responses. (p. 1)

This shows that Alberta and Ontario students perform at a levels significantly above the Canadian average and those in British Columbia and Newfoundland and Labrador perform at the Canadian average, while students in all other jurisdictions perform below the Canadian average. (p.2)

The results of the PCAP 2013 Science Assessment suggest that Canadian jurisdictions are addressing the demands and practices required of students in Grade 8/Secondary II science, and that the majority of students have attained a level of scientific literacy that enables them to use their knowledge and skills in practical day-to-day activities.

The PCAP 2013 results provide both affirmation and direction for Canadian jurisdictions and classrooms. While students appear to understand what is expected of them in science and appear to practise the key aspects when completing science tasks, there is room for improvement. As well, there are numerous students at level 1, for whom science remains a challenging subject. (p. 15)”

Check it out!


November 13, 2014 at 4:47 pm Leave a comment

Spotlight on Science Learning Report

Let’s Talk Science, with Amgen Canada, has released a research report titled Spotlight on Science Learning: Shaping Tomorrow’s Workforce: What do Canada’s Teens Think About their Futures? 

From their announcement:

“This report offers insight into how and when teens think about their future careers as they go through high school and make post-secondary choices. By understanding how teens think about their pathways, and what influences them, we can better help our youth to identify and capture tomorrow’s opportunities.

When it comes to making decisions about education and career paths, Canadian youth are driven by their interests with 86 per cent of youth aged 13-17 saying that interests influence their decisions about education and career aspirations. This is a number that has grown since a 2011 survey (71 per cent).

Today’s youth have a growing interest in and appreciation for science with 72 per cent believing that science is fun, more than twice as many as a 2011 survey (34 per cent). Further, 78 per cent believe science offers them many different career options, while 74 per cent agree that a good understanding of STEM is very important to adult life

Beyond interests, teens place great importance on values when considering future career options with the vast majority wanting jobs that use higher-order skills like making a useful contribution to society (84 per cent), making decisions (75 per cent) and solving problems (70 per cent), all of which can play a role in STEM-based jobs.”

Read the Report

Read/See the InfoGraphic

SOSL_infographic_2014_EN.jpg (2500×6477)

Check it out!



November 13, 2014 at 4:24 pm Leave a comment

Science Culture in Canada

The Council of Canadian Academies has released a new report titled Science Culture: Where Canada  Stands. From their news release

“Science Culture: Where Canada Stands presents a comprehensive examination of Canada’s science culture. Most notably, it contains the results of a new public survey that assesses Canadians’ science attitudes, engagement, and knowledge. The report reviews data on Canadians’ science skills and the current peer-reviewed literature on science culture. It also features an inventory and analysis of the organizations and programs that support and promote science culture in Canada, particularly among youth. This collection of data helps to paint the clearest picture of Canada’s science culture and science culture support system in 25 years. The report also examines strategies that can be used to cultivate and sustain a strong science culture for years to come.”

The panel concluded that generally Canadian’s are equal to or above average compared to other OECD countries in their science culture, and the report describes 5 interventions to continue to  ‘cultivate a strong science culture’:

  1. supporting lifelong science learning
  2. making science inclusive (the report specifically mentions girls and aboriginal populations)
  3. adapting to new technologies
  4. enhancing science communication and engagement
  5. providing national or regional leadership

The council’s web page includes links to the full report, the summaries, infographics etc. Check it out!



September 8, 2014 at 4:42 pm Leave a comment

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