An Evaluation of the Impact of STEMNET's Services on Pupils and Teachers

Jennie Harland, Suzanne Straw, Ruth Hart

17 November 2011

NFER undertook an evaluation of STEMNET’s operations and impact from 2009 to 2011. STEMNET’s vision is to increase young people’s choices and chances through science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

The evaluation focused on STEMNET’s three key programmes:

  • STEM Ambassadors Programme
  • management of After-School Science and Engineering Clubs (ASSECs) funded by DCSF (now DfE) and support to all STEM Clubs through the STEM Clubs Network
  • brokerage of STEM enhancement and enrichment activities.

This report presents the findings from the following strands of the evaluation:

  • a telephone survey of 500 STEM teachers
  • a paper survey of 176 pupils who had taken part in activities with STEM Ambassadors
  • a paper survey of 419 pupils taking part in STEM Clubs
  • case-studies with 14 schools
  • support for STEMNET staff with the analysis of impact data collected from schools within their region.

The evaluation found high levels of satisfaction with STEMNET’s programmes amongst both teachers and pupils and programmes were resulting in a range of important impacts.

Key Findings

For teachers, key impacts included:

  • an increased ability to relate STEM lessons to real world applications of the subjects
  • personal development (for example changes in confidence, motivation, enthusiasm, attitudes, aspirations) in relation to teaching STEM subjects.

For pupils, key impacts included:

  • increased enjoyment of, and interest in, STEM subjects
  • increases in what they knew about the STEM subjects
  • increased awareness of careers that involve STEM
  • increased interest in studying STEM subjects post-16 or in higher education.
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