Exploring the culture of engineering in schools

"A new narrative around engineering in schools could present fulfilling opportunities for young people.”

This is what Peter Finegold, Head of Education and Skills at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), said following the launch of a report into the culture of engineering in schools.

The report, published by IMechE, investigates how engineering is currently perceived in schools and outlines several recommendations for both schools and employers. The study found very positive attitudes to engineering, but students generally had little early exposure to engineering and did not feel well informed about it.

What are the recommendations?

The answer may lie in raising the profile of engineering within the existing curricula. IMechE’s main recommendation is to place a strong emphasis on providing an engaging experience in engineering.

By enhancing young people’s exposure to engineering in the classroom – and providing greater clarity of the nature of engineering and its world-changing potential – the UK schools sector could have a significant impact on the UK’s skill gap and enable more young people to benefit from stimulating, rewarding and worthwhile careers.

How can schools make a difference?

There are many ways that schools can place engineering at the heart of the curricula.

Invite a STEM Ambassador into your school

STEM Ambassadors are volunteers from a range of STEM-related jobs and disciplines. With more than 30,000 STEM Ambassadors based around the UK, they can bring a fresh, inspiring and real-life perspective of engineering into the classroom.

Attend a STEM Insight placement

STEM Insight placements allow teachers, technicians, support staff and careers advisors the opportunity to experience life in a modern industry or leading university. Described as professionally life-changing, participants are equipped with real-life knowledge and experience, helping to bring careers to life in the classroom.

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