Science education is crucial for shaping the present and the future of modern societies. But although the demand for professionals in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) is constantly increasing, the enrolment rates in STEM-programs are decreasing.
The SciChallenge project addresses this issue by launching a pan-European STEM-contest for getting young people between of 10 to 20 years excited about the STEM-topics. Participating individuals or groups will develop a topic-specific project and submit videos, presentations or posters through the SciChallenge Platform. By using a combined online community rating and jury rating approach, 12 winners will be selected and awarded in Vienna in June 2017. In order to promote the contest, supporting schools, teachers and other youth-oriented institutions will be involved.
SciChallenge Topic Sheets
In order to provide inputs as well as inspiration for the participants of the SciChallenge contest, a set of 50 topic sheets was produced. The 1-page topic sheets cover a broad variety of STEM topics ranging from natural science, technology, engineering as well as mathematics. Additionally, an “open category” allow the participants to cover further topics as long as they are directly from the STEM-fields.
While the open category topic sheet addresses both age groups, the other 50 topic sheets are categorized along two age groups. 25 topic sheets are aiming at the 10 to 14 sear old students. These topic sheets are accessible in the following languages: English, German, Greek, Slovenian, Czech, Hungarian, Swedish, Dutch, Italian and Polish. As the “lingua Franca” of global science is English and in order to improve their skills in this language, the 25 topic sheets for the 15 to 20 years old students will be available only in English.
In addition to its function as the main contest channel, the SciChallenge platform will furthermore serve as an awareness channel, which will provide information on events, careers, internships or open days in STEM-institutions.
A first demonstrator was developed and presented, and the open information module was included. The Open Information Module includes: 1) Basic information about the Contest; 2) Guidelines and rules for participation; 3) SciChallenge Topics; 4) Online resources for the participants. Currently, the submission system and the further modules are developed.