SALT LAKE CITY, Aug. 29, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Canvas Network, an open online educational platform from Instructure, today announced that it will be hosting courses focusing on engaging girls in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) initiatives. This free online course series issues a call to action for educators, students and parents to prioritize STEM education for girls in elementary, middle and high school grades, as well as higher education.
The massive online open courses (MOOCs) included in the series aim to provide a community for both girls and boys throughout the world to engage in STEM-related courses. Engaging girls in STEM is crucial at a time when more than half a million jobs in information technology are unfilled across all sectors of the economy, and projections from the White House estimate that in just two years there will be 2.4 million unfilled STEM positions. This gap is further exacerbated by a lack of diversity in STEM, with women and minorities earning 70 percent of college degrees but less than 45 percent of degrees in STEM fields. Women and girls will remain untapped talent if educators and workplaces alike don't take progressive action in introducing them to and involving them in these fields.
"Immersing girls in STEM is vital for the health and progress of our future economy," said Melissa Loble, vice president of platform and partnerships. "We're eager to add all we can to ensure girls are inspired to pursue careers in these critical fields. These courses promote a collaboration between students, teachers and the larger community to build an understanding of why having both men and women in STEM is essential for innovation and progress."
The Girls in STEM series consists of six courses of various lengths, including:
- He Named Me Malala: Inspiring Girls in STEM, offered by Journeys in Film. This course teaches high school teens about Malala Yousafzai, a Nobel Peace Prize winner and advocate of science and girls' education. The course will examine her story as told through the award-winning, critically acclaimed film He Named Me Malala. Students will learn how they can follow her example by using their own passions to make a difference in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, education and more.
- Think Like a Scientist, offered by Real Science Labs. This four-week online course investigates the scientific method and helps students master lab safety procedures, learn basic microscopy and understand the importance of measurement in scientific fields. Each lesson comes to life through real experiments and exercises that allow the students to become scientists.
- Supporting Girls in STEAM, offered by Community Bridge Video. This short introductory course for parents and teachers covers ways in which adult allies can support young women interested in science, technology, engineering, art and design, and mathematics (STEAM) fields. Participants will learn strategies for inspiring girls, how to challenge their own gender biases and how internet access can both help and challenge young women.
- Zappar Powered STEM Learning Using Augmented Reality, offered by Zappar. This course, designed for third to fifth graders, teaches students all about the water cycle—a key STEM topic—and teaches them how to produce their own augmented reality (AR) poster based on the subject. Students can then apply this knowledge and AR wizardry to their future coursework and other STEM fields.
- Think Like a CSI, offered by Real Science Labs. This four-week online course for high schoolers will allow them to investigate forensics materials including crime scenes, fingerprinting and impression evidence. Each forensics lesson will come to life through real experiments and exercises that allow students to fully explore the fascinating world of forensic scientists.
- Think Like a Physicist, offered by Real Science Labs. This course for high schoolers helps them explore the many facets of physics. Students will get hands-on experience with the subject by performing their own real experiments and projects.
The first of these courses will be released on Monday, September 12, 2016, with others following weekly through October 10, 2016. These courses will be free and available through Canvas Network to anyone with an internet connection. The courses utilize creative learning tools—such as incorporating augmented reality, hands-on science experiments and award-winning documentaries—to make STEM more accessible and appealing.
To learn more or enroll in the Girls in STEM courses, please visit http://stem.canvas.net.
ABOUT CANVAS NETWORK
Canvas Network offers open, online courses taught by educational institutions and organizations throughout the world. It provides a place and platform where teachers and students can connect and chart their own course for personal growth, professional development, and academic inquiry. Canvas Network is developed and supported by Instructure, the technology company that makes smart software that makes people smarter. Learn more at www.Canvas.Net.
Instructure, Inc. is a leading software-as-a-service (SaaS) technology company that makes software that makes people smarter. With a vision to help maximize the potential of people through technology, Instructure created Canvas and Bridge to enable organizations everywhere to easily develop, deliver and manage engaging face-to-face and online learning experiences. To date, Instructure has connected millions of instructors and learners at more than 2,000 educational institutions and corporations throughout the world. Learn more about Canvas for higher ed and K-12, and Bridge for the corporate market, at www.Instructure.com.
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