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ELearning is an empowering resource that teachers use to deliver quality, cost-effective training. Education advocates believe that eLearning tools are essential for providing students with current information and enhanced curriculums, as well as delivering well-rounded lessons. From urban to rural classrooms, eLearning is an increasingly vital resource for educators and students.
Combining eLearning and the classroom in new ways, you can walk towards “Blended Learning”. That is an approach to education that combines online educational materials and opportunities for interaction online with traditional place-based classroom methods. It requires the physical presence of both teacher and student, with some elements of student control over time, place, path, or pace
What is STEM education?
Most people are in the dark and moreover, most educators and students are as well. When one hears the acronym “STEM” within an educational setting, they may think along the lines of stem cell research or something dealing with flowers. However, STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
The four letters strands for, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. They may be defined as:
Science: the systematic study of the nature and behaviour of the material and physical universe, based on observation, experiment, and measurement, and the formulation of laws to describe these facts in general terms
Technology: the branch of knowledge that deals with the creation and use of technical means and their interrelation with life, society, and the environment, drawing upon such subjects as industrial arts, engineering, applied science, and pure science.
Engineering: the art or science of making practical application of the knowledge of pure sciences, as physics or chemistry, as in the construction of engines, bridges, buildings, mines, ships, and chemical plants.
Mathematics: a group of related sciences, including algebra, geometry, and calculus, concerned with the study of number, quantity, shape, and space and their interrelationships by using a specialized notation.
STEM can have a different meaning to different people. STEM in higher education is somewhat straightforward. A student enrolled in a STEM-related program, other than teacher education, is in a stand-alone STEM field. For example, if a student is majoring molecular biology, they will enter the STEM workforce as a scientist. They may or may not be exposed to technology, engineering or mathematics that specifically pertains to their field, but chances are they will be exposed in some way shape or form. Therefore, integration in terms of STEM may or may not occur; however, it must be noted they are within a STEM field.
New tools for STEM teaching
Unlike traditional classroom training, STEM education integrates various topics. For instance, educators normally teach subjects such as science and mathematics separately. Furthermore, young learners gain invaluable skills through STEM training, such as problem-solving. It teaches students how to frame problems as puzzles, analyze information and form their own conclusions, and fosters their creativity and innovation as they work through STEM-related lessons.
More importantly, STEM training teaches students how to work together. By participating in group learning sessions, STEM learners develop habits that prepare them for the collaborative workplace of the future. This contributes to students’ academic and career success. They’re more prepared for college and likely to land jobs at the higher end of the pay scale in their chosen fields. Furthermore, those graduates will be able to help with growing and critical problems, such as cybersecurity, that require the attention of experts who possess STEM skills.
Using eLearning teaching tools
As technology advances, young generations are becoming more engaged with interactive platforms. This has changed the way that students learn. In view of this, teachers who deploy eLearning resources in the classroom cater to the habits of today’s technology-enabled generations.
Using eLearning teaching tools, educators can provide interactive, hands-on experiences to students for concepts that were previously abstract in the traditional classroom setting. Interactive technology helps contemporary students to learn complex STEM concepts at an early age because it’s easier for them to engage with it, increasing their understanding of intricate theories. Due to this, teachers who deploy eLearning technology in the learning environment have seen impressive increases in student learning outcomes.
In addition, eLearning technology levels the playing field and makes learning more accessible to students. Thanks to internet connectivity, students can access lessons from anywhere. The technology even inspires some students to move forward with their own independent studies.
Use eLearning or blended learning
A meta-study published in 2019  concluded that the most important contributions of the STEM education to science curriculum dimensions were as following:
- appropriate for physics subjects
- developing life skills
- attracting the attention of the students
- creating career awareness
- learning by fun.
Using eLearning or blended learning can be a tool for all of those dimensions.
References Ryan Ayers: “Can eLearning Be Used For STEM Education?” eLearning Industry, November 8, 2018  Kanadli, Sedat: “A Meta-Summary of Qualitative Findings about STEM Education” International Journal of Instruction, v12 n1 p959-976 Jan 2019 (ERIC)
The picture on the top: rawpixel.com
Lucubrate Magazine 55, March 22, 2019
Categories: Magazine, Teacher, Education, eLearning