Impact and evaluation

Our professional development has proven positive impacts on participants, verified by external evaluations.

We collect and evaluate the impact our programmes have on teachers, support staff, technicians, STEM Ambassadors, employers and most importantly on young people.

The self-reported evidence from participants, internal and externally commissioned evaluations and student achievement data provide a robust, quality assured process with which educators, STEM Ambassadors, employers and other partners can engage. 

Our impact evidence enables us to prove that our professional development has a direct impact on participants, the wider school or college, and ultimately young people.

Impact Report 2019

Partnership is fundamental to how we work at STEM Learning – openness to collaboration has enabled us to grow. This report showcases the positive impact that our work is having.

Read the report


You can see a summary of our impact evidence in our most recent flyer:

In the academic year 2015-16 participants at the National STEM Learning Centre reported:

Our network of Science Learning Partnerships

Report on impact - academic year 2015-2016


Our vision

Take a look at the Model of Change to gain an insight into the National STEM Learning Network's vision to achieve a world-leading STEM education for all young people across the UK.


Impact reports

Improving science teacher retention

Published September 2017

Commissioned by Wellcome and carried out by Education Datalab, this research found that science teachers who participate in CPD through STEM Learning are much more likely to remain in teaching.

One in 12 teachers who did not participate in STEM Learning CPD left teaching within two years. This drops to 1 in 30 for those who did, when other factors (such as age and gender) are taken into account, increasing the odds of remaining by 160%.


External evaluation of the ENTHUSE Partnership Programme

Published June 2017

ENTHUSE Partnership funding enables groups of four to eight schools and colleges to work together, with support from STEM Learning on a two-year intensive programme to raise aspiration and achievement in STEM subjects.

An independent evaluation of ENTHUSE Partnerships has recently been completed by the respected Centre for the Use of Research and Evidence in Education (CUREE).


STEM Clubs: making an impact

Published 2016/17

STEM Clubs offer young people valuable opportunities to explore science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in an informal setting, allowing them to experiment, ask questions and tackle challenges that interest them. 

Research shows that STEM Clubs can have significant and measurable positive impacts on students, teachers and other leaders, and the schools or colleges themselves. This report summarises key findings from evaluation and research so far, along with pinpointing areas for future work. 

Lessons in Excellent Science Education - 10 Years of Impact on Teachers, Pupils and Schools

Published September 2015

For more than ten years, the National STEM Learning Network has provided teachers, technicians and other educators with high impact, subject-specific professional development in STEM subjects. This report highlights five key lessons the Network has learnt about in its first ten years. 

STEM Ambassadors: making an impact

Published November 2016

STEM Ambassadors bring a fresh and inspiring perspective to STEM lessons and careers information, and complement excellent teaching in schools and colleges.

Through recent research and evaluation of STEM Ambassador activity, there are four key lessons that we have learned. These lessons illustrate the key impacts that STEM Ambassadors have on young people and those who work with them.


Evaluation reports:

Triple Science Support Programme: Final evaluation summary (extension period)

Published October 2016

STEM Learning Ltd conducted an evaluation of the Triple Science Support Programme (TSSP) extension period from 1 April to 31 July to supplement the external evaluation of years 1 and 2 of the programme conducted by OPM (published in April 2016). The evaluation comprised of two parts; an online survey to a sample of schools engaged with the programme (n=36) and five case studies. The aim of the evaluation was to provide evidence impact of the programme and highlight achievements from schools that received support during the extension period.

Bringing Cutting Edge Science to the Classroom Programme

Published May 2016

This evaluation was commissioned in Autumn 2015 to analyse the success of the Bringing Cutting Edge Science to the Classroom programme in delivering its stated aims, and to assess the impact of the programme on participants, their students and colleagues.

National STEM Learning Network: Regional Programme - ISOS Partnership

Published in September 2016

This report outlines the effectiveness and impact of STEM continuing professional development (CPD) for schools and colleges in England, delivered by the National STEM Learning Network between April 2015 and March 2016. 

Triple Science Support Programme - Final Evaluation Report

Published April 2016

OPM conducted an evaluation of the Triple Science Support Programme (TSSP) across the years 2014- 2016 of the programme, to evidence the extent of impacts of the programme on three key groups: teachers; students; and science departments, senior leaders, and whole schools. 

Evaluation of the impact of National Science Learning Network CPD on Schools (ISOS Partnership) 

Published in October 2015

This is an evaluation of the impact and benefits of schools engaging with subject-specific science continuing professional development (CPD) from the National Science Learning Network (NSLN) and the National STEM Centre.


National Science Learning Network Regional Programme (ISOS Partnership)

Published in July 2015

This report evaluates the implementation and impact of the third phase of the National Science Learning Network’s regional programme.

Teacher Industrial Partners’ Scheme Evaluation (Dr Suzanne King) 

Published in March 2015 

This report evaluates the effectiveness of the Teacher Industrial Partners’ Scheme and highlights potential recommendations for the future.


Impact evaluation report - Primary science specialist

Published October 2015

This report looks at the impact of two CPD activities - Primary science specialist (2013 -14) and New and aspiring primary science specialist (2014 -15)


Evaluation of the Impact of Myscience CPD Programmes in STEM Leadership on Primary and Secondary schools

Published in November 2014

This summary report (based on research conducted by the National Foundation for Educational Research) investigates the impact of a range of STEM leadership CPD programmes targeted at leaders and teachers of STEM subjects in primary and secondary schools and colleges.


Impact of Science Learning Centre CPD on teachers' retention and careers – Sheffield Hallam University, centre for education and inclusion research 

Published in May 2012 

This report aimed to explore the impact of the support for the CPD of teachers provided by the Science Learning Centres on individual teachers’ career progression and retention within the profession.