Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
Increasing and sustaining access, interest, participation and performance of girls in STEM subjects at all levels.
Many girls in sub-Saharan Africa do not participate significantly or perform well in Mathematics, Science and Technology subjects. This situation becomes more pronounced as the level of education increases and a combination of factors perpetuate the imbalance. These factors include cultural practices and attitudes and biased teaching and learning materials.
FAWE developed its Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) model to increase and sustain access, interest, participation and performance of girls in STEM subjects at all levels.
The model trains teachers to adopt and use STEM curricula, teaching and learning materials and classroom practices that are gender-responsive. It involves not only teachers but education planners, curriculum developers, publishers and women leaders, and sensitises parents and stakeholders on the importance of girls’ participation in STEM.
The Science, Mathematics and Technology model was initiated in 2005 and has been introduced in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Rwanda, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zanzibar and Zimbabwe.
Over 15,000 students have benefited from FAWE’s STEM programme since 2005.
Features of FAWE’s STEM model
The STEM model features extensive use of activities and resources including:
- Science camps and clubs.
- Study tours.
- Profiles on women achievers in science-based fields.
- Exposure to role models.
Awards to female achievers in STEM subjects
Impact of FAWE’s STEM model
- Higher rates of girls’ participation in SMT subjects.
- Improved test scores for girls.
- Improved teachers’ attitudes towards girls’ abilities and participation in SMT.
- Improved instructional materials for SMT subjects.
- Girls’ positive attitudinal change to SMT.
- Greater confidence for girls in tackling academic challenges.
- Enhancement of girls’ chances for career progression.