Attitude of Children from Low Social Economic Area towards STEM Education
Abstract: This paper reports research findings of a case study that investigated the attitude of children from Dublin’s Docklands, a low socio-economic area, towards STEM education and use of technologies in the school. 128 primary school students, boys and girls 10-12 years old from three public schools completed a questionnaire. An analysis of the answers provided in the questionnaire shows that half of the participants have positive attitude towards school, majority of the participants have a positive attitude towards STEM education and they believe that they have good performance in STEM topics. The vast majority of the students (97%) have access to a smartphone and 71% of them use the smartphone every day mostly to search on the Internet, to play games or to communicate with friends or families while only 39.8% use the device to get help with the homework. However, less than one-sixth use the smartphone for school related activities. Large majority of the participants (73%) have access to a PC or laptop at home, but only 25.8% use the device for school activities. The study has shown that vast majority of Irish children from socio-economic status families have access to smartphone/laptop/PC and to Internet at home and they are interested in STEM topics. Therefore, teachers should encourage these students to use more often technologies in the learning process as well as to integrate technology enhanced educational materials as part of their class activities and homework tasks.
Presider: Lubna Ali, RWTH Aachen University