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Evidence for informal science learning

wellcometrust Science Beyond the Classroom Evidence for informal science learning The Wellcome Trust Review of Informal Learning, published in November 2012, examines the informal science learning sector in the UK and its value to science education. We believe that informal learning stimulates interest in science, as well as an appreciation of its social, cultural and historical context. Informal learning experiences can also improve attainment levels and build learners' knowledge and skills. The following evidence underpins these beliefs. 1 Increased engagement and wider interest in science and science careers 2 Time spent in and out of school Waking hours <20% spent in school Informal learning environments encourage curiosity about science and new ways of teaching. Science-related experiences outside the classroom can strongly affect young people's motivation to further study science and eventually choose a career in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). There is huge potential for engaging with young people outside the classroom. >80% Informal learning experiences are associated with raised 89% 74% spent out of school of students who did of students who visited a hands-on Even when they are in full-time education, young people spend less than a fifth of their waking hours in school. interest in science - most students who did practical workshops in science centres and practical workshops.. exhibition... 3 Increased attainment who visited a hands-on exhibition reported an increased interest Young people who are involved in extracurricular and out-of-school experiences perform better in assessments. in science afterwards.2 60% of secondary school students achieved higher marks in a classroom II .reported increased assessment completed after visiting a museum or gallery than in work completed before the visit. interest in 60% of secondary students improved marks in classroom assessment following a museum or gallery visit science Nearly half of under-16s who took part in National Science and Engineering Week activities said they would continue to discuss science GSCE Science entries increase, +II% 2004/5-2008/9 PISA analyses found that, even accounting for socioeconomic and demographic backgrounds, students in schools that offer extracurricular During the school year, students from low socioeconomic and engineering after the events. +4% activities... status backgrounds make similar Schools with no informal Schools with learning interventions 7-10 informal learning interventions progress to those from high socioeconomic .have more positive attitudes towards science .have a stronger belief in their ability Schools with a high number of informal learning interventions, such as ambassador schemes, experienced greater uptake of GCSE Science entries between status backgrounds, but they fall behind during the summer. This indicates to handle science- related tasks the importance of out-of-school of teachers who visited a 94% museum with their students said it encouraged them to work in a more cross-curricular style back in school.4 2004/5 and 2008/9 than schools with no interventions5 perform better in science experiences during summer break." One in four students studying STEM courses at English universities report 4 Long-lasting impact that visits to museums or science centres MI were important or very important in influencing their choice of course. Informal activities create memorable science experiences and contribute to life-long learning. Among children aged 10 to II, 18% of boys and 22% of girls changed their view to agree with the statement "I would like to be a scientist" Disagreed with the statement "I would like to 17% 29% be a scientist" visit to science centre after visiting a About a fifth More than 90% of children aged 9-1I add to their ideas and understanding of a science exhibit if prompted to think about it again at a later date." Adult informal learning experiences contribute more to the variance science centre.7 changed opinions to agree with the in adults' science knowledge than schooling and childhood experiences.B statement

Evidence for informal science learning

shared by PauloEstriga on Feb 27
An A4 infographic about the importance of informal science learning (source references are in another page of the document, you can download it at


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