Texas Tech IMMAP surveyed nearly 1,600 children enrolled in after-school STEM programs across 11 states.
The Texas Tech Institute for Measurement, Methodology, Analysis & Policy (IMMAP) partnered with the Partnerships in Education and Resilience (PEAR) Institute at Harvard University and McLean Hospital to conduct a survey regarding after-school programs and science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) system building.
The results of the survey showed 78 percent of students reported a positive change in their self-reported attitude toward STEM interest after participating in after-school programs.
Results also showed 80 percent of students reported a positive gain in their STEM career knowledge. Seventy-three percent of students reported their STEM identity positively increased and 72 percent of students reported their perseverance and critical-thinking skills increased because of the after-school program experience. Other results showed increases in STEM career interest and STEM activity participation as well as relationships with adults and peers.
The survey was conducted March 15, 2016, through June 24, 2016, in 11 states and worked with approximately 160 after-school STEM programs. The project was made possible with help from the C.S. Mott Foundation and STEM Next at the University of San Diego. Students participated in a STEM interest survey called the PEAR Common Instrument Suite.
The survey measured students' STEM-related attitudes including how motivated the student is to pursue a career in STEM and how often a student seeks to participate in STEM-related activities. Other factors measured in the survey were 21st Century skills, such as how STEM after-school programs affect the quality of relationships with adults and peers in their lives.