Youth Access & Equity in ISL: Developing a Research and Practice Agenda

January 1st, 2015 - January 1st, 2015 | PROJECT

This Science Learning+ project will develop a Youth Access & Equity Research & Practice Agenda, focusing on addressing equity issues for youth, ages 11-14, primarily from non-dominant backgrounds. The project will involve researchers and practitioners from three ISL settings/contexts, (1) Designed spaces, e.g., museums; (2) Community-based, e.g., afterschool clubs; and (3) Everyday science, e.g., science media. The goal of the agenda will be to advance scholarly understanding of equity issues in relation to these three contexts. Taking an ecological view of STEM learning as a sociocultural process of participation and transformation, the project will employ a Complex Adaptive System lens to document multiple pathways youth take (or not) within/across ISL settings over time, the impact these pathways have on learning and development, and their influence on ISL organizations themselves. These lenses will help us identify aspects of learning environments which shape youth access and development, and the value and impact of the equity ideas, tools and practices.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Project Products

Equity in informal science learning: a practice-research brief
Pathways in informal science learning: a practice-research brief
Infographic: Youth equity pathways in informal science learning (ISL)
Research and practice agenda
Science Learning+ Youth Equity Pathways in Informal Science Learning: Survey Findings

Team Members

Louise Archer, Principal Investigator, King's College London
emily dawson, Co-Principal Investigator, University College London
Janet Sumner, Co-Principal Investigator, Open University
Sarah Thomas, Co-Principal Investigator, Zoological Society of London
Lynn Dierking, Co-Principal Investigator, Oregon State University
Angela Calabrese Barton, Co-Principal Investigator, Michigan State University
Melanie Washington, Co-Principal Investigator, STEMNET
Ruth Murray, Co-Principal Investigator, At-Bristol
Jim Short, Contributor, American Museum of Natural History
Emilyn Green, Contributor, Community Science Workshop Network
Sue Ellen McCann, Contributor, KQED


Funding Source: Wellcome Trust
Funding Program: SL+
Funding Amount: 70000


Access and Inclusion: Ethnic | Racial
Audience: Middle School Children (11-13) | Museum | ISE Professionals | Youth | Teen (up to 17)
Discipline: Education and learning science | General STEM | Social science and psychology
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Afterschool Programs | Broadcast Media | Community Outreach Programs | Media and Technology | Museum and Science Center Programs | Public Events and Festivals | Public Programs | Websites | Mobile Apps | Online Media