Informal science education supports people of all ages and walks of life in exploring science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Over the coming year, in response to what we've heard from you, CAISE Inquiry Groups will be working to synthesize evidence and foster conversation across the field about the contributions of informal science education (ISE) in its many and varied forms. Here’s the concept: Much if not most of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) learning happens outside of school; this informal, free-choice STEM learning is supported by a broad infrastructure ranging from museums and public television stations to community centers, websites, and amateur clubs; and policies operating at a variety of levels largely determine the boundary conditions under which ISE operates. These three aspects of ISE will be examined by groups made up of researchers and practitioners, now forming, who will report out through online discussion forums, conference sessions, and published reports. A fourth group will be examining strategies for building knowledge and community across this diverse field.
The community will have opportunities to participate as contributors and reviewers, in discussions online and in person, and during a March 2010 ISE Summit in Washington, D.C. If you’re interested in being kept up to date on one of these inquiries, or possibly even contributing to a group, let us know.
The inquiry process will have three main strands:
If you're interested in hearing about the work as it goes along, or possibly participating in one of the Inquiry Groups, we encourage you to get in touch with us.