STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) disciplines are globally seen as essential for work and citizenship, while providing the cut through in global economic competition and social creativity. For economies to flourish individuals will need to master STEM. Only few learners in South Africa choose STEM subjects in higher education because they lack the interest/skills/knowledge, although STEM is compulsory in Grade 7 to 9. One of the reasons of this unsatisfactory outcome is the difficulties learners have with the language of instruction at school as most of them speak a different mother tongue.
The general objective is to increase the number of students in STEM-oriented programmes and courses in higher education in South Africa. What the project aims to achieve is well aligned with national and provincial strategies in South Africa to improve the quality of learning outcomes (learners’ performance) and to increase the number of learners in STEM subjects, who will then become eligible for a Bachelors’ programme at a university. It will complement the existing strategies to develop English as Language of Learning and Teaching (LOLT) in STEM education.
For this project AP University of Applied Sciences (department of education and training) and the University of Johannesburg (faculty of education) will work in close collaboration in order to achieve the project objectives.