Equity and Evaluation in Informal STEM Education

March 1st, 2019 | RESEARCH

Informal STEM education institutions seek to engage broader cross sections of their communities to address inequities in STEM participation and remain relevant in a multicultural society. In this chapter, we advance the role that evaluation can play in helping the field adopt more inclusive practices and achieve greater equity than at present through evaluation that addresses sociopolitical contexts and reflects the perspectives and values of non-dominant communities. To do this for specific projects, we argue that evaluation should privilege the voices and lived experiences of non-dominant communities, engage communities in identifying desired outcomes, and ensure multicultural validity of instruments, measures, and inferences. At the field-wide level, we urge evaluators to examine conceptualizations of “broadening participation in STEM,” evaluate community-based partnerships, and address replication and scaling. Ultimately, these actions can lead to greater equity in evaluation and in informal STEM education.


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Team Members

Cecilia Garibay, Author, Garibay Group
Rebecca Teasdale, Author, Garibay Group


Identifier Type: doi
Identifier: 10.1002/ev
Identifier Type: issn
Identifier: 1534-875x

Publication: New Directions for Evaluation
Volume: 161
Page(s): 87-106

Related URLs

Full Text


Access and Inclusion: English Language Learners | Ethnic | Racial | Hispanic | Latinx Communities | Indigenous and Tribal Communities | Urban | Women and Girls
Audience: Evaluators | Families | General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: Education and learning science | General STEM
Resource Type: Peer-reviewed article | Research Products
Environment Type: Afterschool Programs | Citizen Science Programs | Exhibitions | Media and Technology | Parks | Outdoor | Garden Exhibits | Public Programs