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STEM and STEAM and the spaces between: an overview of education agendas pertaining to ‘disciplinarity’ across three Australian states


MacDonald, A and Hunter, J and Wise, K and Fraser, S, STEM and STEAM and the spaces between: an overview of education agendas pertaining to disciplinarity' across three Australian states, Journal of Research in STEM Education, 5, (1) pp. 75-92. ISSN 2149-8504 (2019) [Refereed Article]

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This article presents an overview of how interdisciplinary education agendas are being interpreted and enacted within three Australian states: New South Wales, Tasmania and Victoria. A comparative discussion is offered to ascertain the common and contrasting inhibitors and enablers of these agendas, specifcally approaches to STEM and STEAM across the three states. Consideration is given to the priorities espoused in current State and Federal policy agendas. The article explores how disciplinary acronyms such as STEM and STEAM are being mobilised to empower or exclude particular disciplines, and how this implicates upon enactment of the three dimensions of the Australian Curriculum. By focusing on the contested spaces between these disciplines, the distinctiveness and potential of various interdisciplinary agendas can be better understood. In turn, ways of recognising, embracing and prioritising different forms of disciplinary knowledge can be identifed in the spaces between disciplinary curriculum and pedagogy. These diverse ways of knowing are posited as integral to equipping young people for uncertain futures.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:STEM, STEAM, interdisciplinarity, interdisciplinary education
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Curriculum and pedagogy
Research Field:Science, technology and engineering curriculum and pedagogy
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Teaching and curriculum
Objective Field:Assessment, development and evaluation of curriculum
UTAS Author:MacDonald, A (Dr Abbey MacDonald)
UTAS Author:Fraser, S (Professor Sharon Fraser)
ID Code:134754
Year Published:2019
Deposited By:Education
Deposited On:2019-09-03
Last Modified:2020-05-21

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