The Enterprising Science Project
Enterprising Science is a five-year partnership between King's College London and the Science Museum, funded by BP (2013-2017). This research and development project uses the concept of ‘science capital’ (science-related qualifications, interest, literacy and social contacts) to understand how young people from all backgrounds engage with science and how their engagement might be supported.
The Project Aims
Our research shows that the more science capital a young person has, the more likely they are to study science post-16 and to see science as 'for me'. Yet, our national survey shows that 27% of all 11 to 17 year olds have low science capital, particularly those from disadvantaged schools and communities. Low science capital limits their opportunities and outcomes in life, and contributes to the shortfall in young people in the UK choosing STEM subjects.
Enterprising Science aims to engage more young people with science by:
- increasing understanding about the factors that influence science engagement and participation among young people.
- helping teachers to build students' science capital
- developing new approaches for engaging students from all backgrounds with science, particularly focusing on those from disadvantaged schools and communities
King's College London has steered, designed and informed Enterprising Science, including:
Enterprising Science is a partnership of academics and practitioners working together to support schools and other professionals to engage more young people with science. Our approach aims to highlight the relevance of science to diverse young people's futures, and find ways to connect school science with students' diverse identities and lives.
It involves collaboration between schools, young people and their families, museums and science centres. We support secondary schools in:
- identifying and valuing their students' diverse funds of knowledge, (identities, expertise, interests and and experiences)
- linking these funds of knowledge to school science to make science education mmore meaningful, inclusive and relevant to students' lives.
- developing pedagogies that build science capital within everyday science lessons
- makeing use of museum resources ans out of school learning experiences within science teaching.
BP provided £4.3 million to fund Enterprising Science, a partnership between King's College London and Science Museum, over five years. Find out more about BP and the BP Educational Service.