Edith Cowan University
School of Education / Edith Cowan Institute for Education Research
WA Department of Commerce through the Technology and Industry Advisory Council.
Education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) is a powerful and productive driving force for economic growth. A strong STEM education system provides the essential underpinning of an innovative and scientifically literate culture that: develops the capabilities for individuals to function effectively within a science and technology based society; provides an ever widening range of career opportunities; and, builds the productive capacity required to drive a prosperous economy and enhanced well-being in an increasingly competitive world. The STEM education pipeline begins in our schools, therefore there is widespread and deep concern about the unsatisfactory status of STEM education in WA primary and secondary schools. This concern is also evident at the national level where Professor Ian Chubb, Australia’s Chief Scientist, has made a strong call for action in Australia to increase the number of STEM graduates to drive innovation and economic growth. The imperative for WA is to support the development of our school students’ STEM capabilities and interest in further education and careers in STEM.