Daniel Bisaccio, lecturer in education and director of science education, has co-authored a paper urging a broader imperative for STEM — science, technology, engineering, and mathematics — education. The paper, which appears in the “Perspectives” section of this month's PLOS Biology, examines previous research that makes the case for STEM education as an important factor in economic prosperity. Bisaccio’s paper suggests that there are also other reasons why STEM education should be encouraged. “The real important part of STEM is getting students to become scientifically literate, and we feel that the economic piece is secondary to getting kids involved in doing science,” Bisaccio said. “As a result, getting young students to take part in real science can make a difference in the health of the environment.” Bisaccio and his co-authors argue that teaching students the importance of preserving biodiversity and ecosystem functionality as a part of STEM education can have a larger, longer-term impact on economic growth.

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