207. Recasting the Agreements to Re-Humanize STEM Education & Practices

Mays Imad, Connecticut College; Michael Reder, Connecticut College; Maddy Rose, Connecticut College;

The purpose of education is to understand and help solve local and global problems to better society and the world. STEM education remains far removed from most people's lived experiences and is detached from the real-world social, political, and economic contexts in which it exists, perpetuating existing inequities by failing to address the needs and experiences of marginalized and historically excluded groups. The panel will propose a model to humanize STEM education by intentionally and explicitly grounding all work in the recognition of the inherent worth and dignity of all students. This approach recognizes the ways in which power dynamics, privilege, and social identities impact the way knowledge is produced and disseminated within academic settings, and takes steps to create more equitable learning spaces that promote deep and meaningful learning, wellbeing, generative dialogue, collaboration, and mutual respect within the academic community. The panelists will begin by proposing a critical examination of the assumptions that govern teaching and learning within STEM, with the goal of making STEM education radically inclusive, holistic, empowering, and integrative. Throughout, the panelists will engage the audience and deliberate on the notion of being human. Being human in STEM involves recognizing the broader ideas related to the human experience and the human condition. Panelists will argue that to envision a future of humanistic STEM, one that is intentionally grounded in equity for all, including the environment, it is necessary to make visible and challenge the unarticulated assumptions that underlie our current approaches to STEM education and research.

Contact: mimad@conncoll.edu, reder@conncoll.edu, mrose3@conncoll.edu

Keywords: University-Society Relations, Method and Practice, Medicine and Healthcare, Education; humanism; recasting agreements; pluralistic epistemology; sustainability; STEM justice

Published: 04/07/2023