Science capital research brings together everything that we know about good science engagement.
A science-capital-informed approach is about reflecting on your science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) engagement offer through the eyes of your audiences. Taking this approach allows us to create an environment where people from all walks of life feel welcome at, and inspired by, our STEM experiences.
The engagement reflection points help us critically think about our audiences’ experience – from the environment that we invite them into, to the feelings and emotions they will take from our experiences.
These key points can easily be applied to any STEM engagement experience:
Use visual and verbal language that helps everyone to feel that they can do and be part of STEM.
Help everybody to feel welcome and confident to take part in your experiences.
Help people to recognise that they have and use a wide range of STEM skills.
Encourage people to talk about the experiences they have had with you and about STEM in their lives.
Provide ways to help people to continue making STEM connections after your experience.
Broaden the perception of who does and uses STEM in their work and in everyday life.
Link STEM content to people’s rich and diverse interests and experiences.
Value and build on people’s existing STEM knowledge and experience.
Help people to feel that STEM is something they can do.
Our reflection points were informed by science capital and wider science engagement research and are founded on our Science Museum Group approach and values. Our previous blog post shares more about the development of our reflection points and provides examples of how they can each be practically applied.
You can read more about our reflection points and how we are taking a science capital informed approach in our Engaging All Audiences With Science booklet.