Professional Development Opportunities for Informal STEM Learning Professionals

Monday, March 23, 2020
Resource Type:
Conference Proceedings | Reference Materials
Environment Type: 
Professional Development, Conferences, and Networks, Professional Development and Workshops, Informal/Formal Connections, Higher Education Programs
Educators/Teachers | Museum/ISE Professionals | Evaluators | Learning Researchers
Education and learning science | General STEM
Oregon State University, JKS Consulting, Tufts University, University Of California, Berkeley, American Museum Of Natural History, University Of California, Santa Barbara, MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation, Michigan State University, Impression 5 Science Center

In order to engage visitors, guests, participants or audiences in positive STEM learning experiences, informal learning institutions need professionals who understand how to design for and facilitate engaging activities. Initial professional training for informal STEM educators, and subsequent ongoing professional learning create considerable challenges. There is a need for providing informal STEM educators with pathways to professionalization that guarantee high quality educators who can support successful informal STEM education. In this symposium, we propose to share research on key aspects of training and developing informal STEM learning professionals, including a framework to identify and support job competencies and knowledge gaps, results of a study on museology programs, as well as 355 multiple models for ongoing professional development. Our intent is to share an overview of the state of the field and current tools and programs for supporting this population of education-focused professionals, while also providing an opportunity to debate and discuss next steps in the field around standards and expectations and related opportunities for ongoing professional learning.

Publication Name: 
NARST 2020

Team Members

Jill SteinAuthor
Lynn TranLynn TranAuthor
Preeti GuptaPreeti GuptaAuthor
Ron SkinnerRon SkinnerAuthor
Sinead BrienSinead BrienAuthor
Micaela BalzerMicaela BalzerAuthor

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