Afterschool Research: STEM

Science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) skills are increasingly important—afterschool can play a significant role

Afterschool STEM programs are a growing part of the K-12 education landscape. Our research captures how vital STEM learning in afterschool can be and documents the impact afterschool has on young people's lives.

Afterschool and summer programs are offering engaging, hands-on STEM learning programs that are not only getting children excited about these topics, but are also helping them build some real-life skills and proficiencies. There is mounting evidence from a diverse set of afterschool programs that demonstrates the impact of out-of-school time settings.

Date Title

Page 1 of 3

Community STEM Collaborations that Support Children and Families

Youth are natural scientists at birth, discovering and exploring their world and trying to make sense of it. A child’s education is not limited to just the time they spend in the classroom. Children learn at home with their families, in public libraries, or through out-of-school-time experiences provided at community centers and in afterschool and summer learning programs, and even on vacations. In this paper, we endeavor to make the case that Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) is an ideal subject area that can engage children with fun, active learning activities. It is also an important societal area around which parents, librarians, and OST providers can collaborate and complement the work of schools.

STEM

Download
Featured

This is afterschool STEM (JUNE 2019)

A one-pager that makes the case for afterschool STEM using the latest research. 

21st CCLC STEM

Download

STEM Ready America: Inspiring and Preparing Students for Success with Afterschool and Summer Learning (March 2017)

STEM Ready America, a compendium from 40 authors, presents the evidence for how afterschool STEM programs are preparing young people to be successful in school today and the workforce tomorrow. In addition to current research, the compendium includes real-world examples of effective practices, programs, and partnerships.

STEM

Go to Resource

Students Achieve More with Afterschool STEM (June 2017)

A one-pager that makes the case for afterschool STEM using the latest research.

STEM

Download

Growing computer science education in afterschool: Opportunities and challenges (December 2016)

We asked the afterschool field about their familiarity and interest in computer science (CS) education, as well as the challenges to offering CS. The findings in this report provide K-12 CS education stakeholders with an understanding of how best to support the growth of quality, sustainable CS education within the afterschool field.

STEM

Download

Full STEM Ahead: Afterschool Programs Step Up as Key Partners in STEM Education (Sept 2015)

This report provides the first national look at access to afterschool STEM programs and parental attitudes towards such programs by outlining survey findings, identifying current challenges, and providing recommendations to improve afterschool STEM programming in the future. Full STEM Ahead is presented as part of the third edition of America After 3PM, which spans a decade of household survey data chronicling how children spend the hours between 3 and 6 p.m.

STEM

Download
Executive Summary

Examining the impact of afterschool STEM programs (July 2014)

Authors: Anita Krishnamurthi (Afterschool Alliance), Melissa Ballard (Afterschool Alliance), and Gil Noam (Program in Education, Afterschool and Resilency at Harvard University)

Afterschool programs that provide strong STEM learning experiences are making an impact on participating youth not only become excited and engaged in these fields but develop STEM skills and proficiencies, come to value these fields and their contributions to society, and -- significantly -- begin to see themselves as potential contributors to the STEM enterprise. This paper summarizes evaluation data from a selection of strong afterschool STEM programs, providing a snapshot of the types of substantive impacts afterschool programs are having on youth.

STEM

Download

What afterschool STEM does best: How stakeholders describe youth learning outcomes (Fall 2013)

Authors:  Anita Krishnamurthi (Afterschool Alliance), Bronwyn Bevan (Exploratorium), Jen Rinehart (Afterschool Alliance), & Vicky Ragan Coulon (Evaluation & Research Associates)

An articulation of how afterschool programs contribute to STEM interest, capacity and values in youth participants. From the Fall 2013 issue of Afterschool Matters.

STEM

Go to Resource

Computing & engineering in afterschool (December 2013)

The number of jobs requiring proficiency in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields is projected to grow by 17 percent between 2008 and 2018, which is almost double the growth of non-STEM occupations. Computing and engineering represent a majority of these STEM jobs, and it is important that students are prepared to take advantage of these opportunities. Afterschool programs represent an avenue to provide robust learning experiences in computing and engineering, especially as schools are under many constraints and pressures that might prevent them from offering these topics. This issue brief provides background on some of the challenges within K-12 education and highlights several afterschool programs that are doing an exemplary job of engaging kids in computing and engineering.

STEM

Download

Partnerships with STEM-rich institutions (November 2013)

Afterschool programs have long partnered with other youth-serving and community organizations to better meet the needs of their students. As interest and momentum grows around STEM programming in afterschool , partnerships become increasingly important in offering high-quality, hands-on STEM experiences for youth. This issue brief demonstrates several models of how afterschool programs are partnering with STEM-rich institutions like science centers and museums, universities and colleges, business and industry, and government agencies. The brief highlights the strengths of each type of STEM-rich partner and describes the potential contributions to afterschool programs.

STEM

Download